Ag department: plant pest found in Louisiana for 1st time
BATON ROUGE (AP) - Louisiana's agriculture department says scientists have found a fast-reproducing plant pest in the state for the first time - and it's one that can attack many crops, including soybeans, sugarcane and sweet potatoes.
It's a roundworm known to damage varieties of tomato, soybean and sweet potato that are resistant to a related pest, the Southern root-knot nematode.
It's called the guava root-knot nematode (NEE-muh-tohd). The Louisiana Department of Agriculture and Forestry said in a news release Friday that it was recently confirmed in Morehouse Parish. The LSU AgCenter will make a statewide survey for it.
Commissioner Mike Strain says one of the best ways of reducing its spread is cleaning soil off of equipment before moving from one field to another. He says that includes tires and boots or shoes.
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