Outbreak of ‘Ripersiella hibisci’, a harmful organism never documented in Europe

Outbreak of ‘Ripersiella hibisci’, a harmful organism never documented in Europe
Outbreak of ‘Ripersiella hibisci’, a harmful organism never documented in Europe

Alarm in Europe for a harmful organism never documented so far in the Old Continent, This is the Ripersiella hibisci, a pseudococcid widespread above all in Asia that passes its life cycle on the roots of the plant. A outbreak it was detected in Switzerland and now the Swiss authorities are trying to circumscribe it.

Between March and May, the Federal Phytosanitary Service explains in a note, 50 Callistemon plants – also called pipe cleaner – were imported into Switzerland from an Italian company where an outbreak of Ripersiella hibisci, a mealybug classified as a particularly dangerous pest in both Switzerland and the European Union. It can indeed infest various plants guests, especially those in pots such as hibiscus, oleander, pipe cleaner, rhododendrons, figs and various species of bonsai. Plants initially exhibit retarded growth, turn yellow and wilt, and eventually die.

“It is important to prevent this new and dangerous pest from taking root and becoming a threat to horticulture exercised in a professional capacity “, explains the Federal Phytosanitary Service.

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