BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) -- State agriculture experts are asking citrus growers to be on the lookout for sweet orange scab of citrus caused by a fungus and recently found on a satsuma tree in Orange, Texas, about 3.5 miles west of the Louisiana border.

Previously, this disease had only been reported in South America.

LSU AgCenter plant pathologist Don Ferrin says the scab presents little problem, but it affects the ability to sell the fruit because of the way it looks. Ferrin says it can be controlled with fungicides applied at and shortly after bloom.

Ferrin says a survey for sweet orange scab within one-mile of the infected tree in Texas was conducted over the weekend. A similar check for the disease in Calcasieu Parish will begin this week.

Citrus scab commonly occurs on lemons, tangerines, grapefruit and satsumas and rarely occurs on sweet oranges. Sweet orange scab occurs primarily on sweet oranges, tangerines and satsumas.

Copyright 2010 The AP.

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