Florida Olive Pests

Two links of interest for olive producers and Extension faculty are provided in this post.

New on the UF/IFAS EDIS: Pests and Fungal Organisms Identified on Olives (Olea europaea) in Florida.

and

Fresh from Florida Plant Industry Blog: Good Dog! FDACS Canine Team Intercepts Olive Fruit Fly.


New on the UF/IFAS EDIS: Pests and Fungal Organisms Identified on Olives (Olea europaea) in Florida.

Olive (Olea europaea) production in Florida has increased over the last few years. Most of this production is on small farms, but larger areas are being planted as well. As trees become available in nurseries many homeowners are planting them in their landscapes. Fortunately, olives are a relatively pest-free species, but some occasional invaders can be a nuisance or cause lasting harm. A few plant pathogens that may infect olives also can lead to a decline in overall plant health, fruit yield, or the visual appearance of plants. A survey of olive production and interviews with Florida growers in 2014 identified the pests and diseases described in this article. Links to more specific pest information on biology, behavior and control are provided when available.

damaged fruit

Figure 1. Olive anthracnose on fruit from Marion County, Florida.

Credit:  Jennifer L. Gillett-Kaufman, UF/IFAS


On September 11th Fresh from Florida Plant Industry blogged about the interception of the olive fruit fly in Florida!

Read more in this story- Good Dog! FDACS Canine Team Intercepts Olive Fruit Fly.

Green olives

Figure 2. Olive fruit.

Credit:  Jennifer L. Gillett-Kaufman, UF/IFAS

We are hopeful that this story will be a reminder that we all need to be vigilant when it comes to protecting Florida agriculture and our environment. As consumers we might be tempted to bring in new plants or fruit, but bringing in a pest like the olive fruit fly could kill the olive industry in Florida before it even has time to start. We are still unsure if olives will be viable commodity with our climate in Florida. As research continues in this area IFAS will provide more information on olive production in Florida.