How to Combat Citrus Greening by Building Root Mass Organic Fulv-Ex 13-0-5

"TKO" Phosphite 0-29-26
June 2014

The latest news out of University of Florida's citrus research program is that Citrus Greening severely damages citrus roots long before tree leaves show signs of injury. In fact, a whopping 30% to 50% of a tree's fibrous root system is often lost to greening before any signs of the disease are visible in the tree's leaves.

The scientific paper on the research results appeared in the April 2014 issue of Plant Pathology, and was recently summarized in www.growingproduce.com. The lead author of the study, Evan Johnson, says, "This early root loss means that the health of a citrus tree is severely compromised before the grower even knows it is infected." Johnson and other University of Florida researchers recommend that citrus growers put an increased focus on maintaining the health of a grove's root system.

Increasing Root Mass

Veterans in the industry know the old adage about the importance of keeping a plant's root-to-shoot ratio in balance. In the early days of greening, some growers instinctively - and often successfully - sought to keep groves productive by drastically cutting back the canopy of infected trees to maintain a decent root to shoot balance. Now that we know that greening damages roots far earlier than we once thought, growers can also fight back by proactively building and maintaining a heavy root mass, both before and after disease symptoms appear.

Growth Product's Organic Fulv-Ex 13-0-5 was introduced to the market last year as the perfect liquid soil amendment to stimulate root growth in citrus and tree fruits. Fulv-Ex contains 5% Fulvic Acid, 10% Humic Acid, and 1% Kelp Extract, and has a guaranteed analysis of 13-0-5 with 60% Slow Release Nitrogen. There is simply no other product like it.

Both Humic Acid and Fulvic Acid are humates, which physically and chemically alter the soil to improve water and air movement, increase cation exchange capacity, and create better conditions for root growth. All humates encourage soil microbial activity and promote root cell division and elongation. But Fulvic Acid is, in a sense, like Humic Acid on steroids.

Fulvic acid, which is extracted from Humic Acid, is a chemically distinct molecule that is lighter and smaller than a regular Humic Acid molecule. Because of its small size and weight, it is more nimble and can move more quickly across cell membranes into plant roots and foliage. Highly soluble in water, Fulvic Acid also acts as a chelating agent that allows other nutrients to be more readily absorbed by roots.

For most citrus groves, I recommend applying 1 to 2 gallons of Fulv-Ex 13-0-5 per acre, either as a drench or by broadcast or banded, 3 to 4 times per year, and maintaining a foliar canopy nutrition spay program that includes "TKO" Phosphite 0 -29-26. By giving both roots and the shoots some proven TLC, you'll get the most you possibly can out of your citrus this year.

Give us a call at (800) 648-7626 and ask to talk to a nutrition specialist for greater detail about Fulv-Ex, "TKO" Phosphite, or any other Growth Products solution, or to help tailor a custom nutrition plan.