The overall objective of the project is to develop practical solutions for sustainable management of citrus diseases, through an integrated plan for containment of newly emerged citrus pathogen threatening the entire Mediterranean agrumiculture. In particular, the project will deal with the containment of the effects of CTV infections (now endemic in several citrus growing areas of Apulia region), implement preventive actions against the risk of introduction of HLB, which is not yet present in the Mediterranean countries, although one of the vector species is already present. Strengthen the controls for Xylella fastidiosa (Xf).
The experimental plan includes two specific tasks:
Developing protocols for simultaneous and multiple diagnosis of citrus pathogens. The implementation of the automation of diagnostic protocols and their validation on a large scale in commercial and nursery propagating materials.
Define the features (agronomic and productive) of alternative rootstocks to sour orange through experimental tests under controlled and field conditions. Evaluate the effectiveness of using an interstock between sour orange and sweet orange to delay or mitigate the symptoms of declining that occur as a result of CTV infections.