The appearance of Xylella fastidiosa is causing great concern in the Spanish agricultural sector, as it can affect many species among which olive trees, vineyard, almond or stone fruit.
This bacterium causes a rapid and generalized decay of the plant, registering, in the most severe cases, the drought of the leaves and branches and, finally, the death of the whole plant.
According to an evaluation conducted by the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) on the efficacy of treatments for this bacterium in olive trees, positive results have been observed after the use of HYDRACUP and the like based on citric acid, zinc and copper hydrocyanic acid.
These treatments against Xylella fastidiosa reduce the symptoms of the disease but do not eliminate the pathogen in infected plants.
EFSA experts have evaluated the research carried out in Puglia (Italy) by two groups, one from the University of Foggia and the other from the Research Council on Agriculture and Agrarian Economy (CREA) in Caserta. They also examined treatments used elsewhere to control bacterial infections in plants, including olive, fruit trees and vineyards.
Foggia researchers treated olive trees infected with several bioactive compounds after severe pruning. A vigorous new growth of the branches, which had leaves free of symptoms, was observed after five months of treatment. Treated trees had important olive crops.
The EFSA considers that it would be premature to draw conclusions about the long-term efficacy of this type of treatment only with these experimental results. Only experiments conducted over several campaigns can provide reliable information on the long-term efficacy of these treatments.