The Q&A Archives: Oranges Rotting

Question: The past few weeks my Valencia oranges have been developing a tan-colored rotting spot before fruit is completely mature. Fruit then falls to the ground. What is the cause of this?

Answer: Oranges are susceptible to a number of insect pests. The damage from scales and mealybugs can prompt development of bacterial soft rot of fruit. Once the fruit is infected it drops from the trees. Be sure to clean up any fallen fruit and destroy it to prevent further infestation. Then check your trees for signs of insects. You can use a horticultural oil in the early spring to kill overwintering eggs, scales and mealybugs. Be sure to spray all sides of limbs and branches to get complete coverage. Read and apply according to label directions.

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