Dr. Cal Welbourn and Dr. Patti Anderson from the Division ofRaoiella indicain Florida- One Year Later”.  The red palm mite was first detected in the United States in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida on November 29, 2007.  Since then, it has been spreading down through Broward and Miami-Dade County.  This pest of coconut and other palms appears to be spreading very quickly.  Cal stated, “at this point the best control method is to simply refrain from spraying pesticides.  Allowing the red palm mite’s predators to thrive may be the best method of control.”

Cal and Patti are working on an interactive digital key, where mites and their host plants can be identified through characteristics and images. of palms in a relatively small area to survey.  Without going out of the country there is not another place to go to survey all these palms in one place”, said Cal.

Montgomery Botanical Center is honored to have had the Division of Plant Industry visit MBC to survey our collection.  Collaborating with government agencies to research palm pests benefits all South Florida Palm owners.