Do you think you have found a tree that is HLB-tolerant?
For several years, CRDF funded a project with UF-IFAS to investigate trees reported by growers as possibly HLB-tolerant. These trees – called “escape” trees – appeared to have the natural capacity to “escape” the ravages of HLB.
The project, led by Dr. Fred Gmitter, pursued countless leads. The process involved taking root and leaf samples, and coming back in a year to see how the tree was doing.
Unfortunately, few leads emerged, but in December of 2021, the “Donaldson” tree was discovered on a USDA property near Clermont. It was clearly infected, but had abundant fruit.
In the aftermath of this discovery and at the encouragement of industry partners, CRDF is re-instituting this program. The details are still being worked out, but if you believe there is a tree on your property that is doing exceptionally well compared to all the others, call us (863-956-8817) and let us know and we will check it out. Let’s hope there are many trees demonstrating natural tolerance!