Florida Agriculture Commissioner Adam Putnam has issued a crisis exemption for Belay 2.13 SC insecticide to control Asian citrus psyllid on bearing citrus trees.

The declaration will allow application of the insecticide from Valent U.S.A. until the Environmental Protection Agency can approve a Section 18 emergency use permit, according to Michael Rogers, an associate entomology professor based at the Citrus Research and Education Center in Lake Alfred.

Belay 2.13 SC, which isn't yet registered, is a slightly different formulation than Belay 50 WG. The SG formulation already is registered but only for use as a soil application to non-bearing citrus trees.

Both products contain the active ingredient, clothianidin.

To use the 2.13 SC formulation, applicators and growers must have a copy of Putnam's crisis declaration and a draft of the product's Section 18 label, he said.

The label allows applications totaling 24 fluid ounces per acre per growing season or a maximum of 12 fluid ounces per application to 3- to 5-year-old trees that are 5-9 feet tall.

It can only be used as a soil application and cannot be applied to the foliage.

The exemption will provide growers with one more neonicotinoid they can applying to young trees during the growing season, Rogers said.

"This gets us much closer to our goal of providing year-round protection of the trees 5-9 feet tall," Rogers told attendees of the Florida Citrus Growers Institute, April 8, in Avon Park.

Admire Pro—imidacloprid— and Platinum—thiamethoxam—are already registered for soil application to young citrus trees, both bearing and non-bearing.

The goal is to try to prevent psyllid feeding on young trees to minimize the chance of infection by the citrus greening bacterium that the insects carry.

The label recommends against applying Belay from November through the following season's bloom period.