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Burrowing nematode regulations
Burrowing Nematode (BN), Radopholus similis, is a microscopic wormlike parasite of citrus, bananas, coconut, coffee, and other fruits and vegetables, ornamental trees, grasses, and weeds. The nematode burrows into the roots of plants, creating cracks and cavities. As a result, declining plants will produce smaller leaves and fruit. Plants wilt, prematurely defoliate, and eventually fall over due to lack of root support. Spread of R. similis occurs primarily through movement of infected plant roots and soil, although natural movement can occur in soil over short distances.

R. similis was first observed in 1893 in Fiji in the South Pacific. The nematode is now known world-wide in sub-tropical and tropical regions including Africa, Asia, Australia, Central America, Europe, North America, and South America. In the United States, the nematode is found in California, Florida, Hawaii, Louisiana, Puerto Rico, and Texas.

The California Department of Food and Agriculture has established a state exterior quarantine against R. similis to protect the state’s agriculture industry. This quarantine covers rooted host plants and associated soil. Areas under quarantine include Alabama, Arkasas, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, Puerto Rico, South Carolina, and Texas. Areas also include plant material that has been re-routed from quarantined areas through other states, regardless of period of time.
The Oregon Department of Agriculture has voluntarily added BN to it’s export quarantine list requiring miscellaneous greenhouse tropical plants shipped to California to be certified free of R. similis. Nurseries wanting to ship BN host material to California must be tested and found free of R. similis and present a certificate of quarantine compliance (CQC) issued by an authorized official from the state of Oregon. The CQC must state that it has been determined by official inspection and testing, the host plants and associated soil of covered commodities were found to be free of R. similis.