Shiny trails on Meyer lemon leaves

I can only assume that these shiny trails are being left by some sort of insect. I’ve checked around and can’t find any signs of current activity. The leaves are also curling which I’m sure is a byproduct as well. I have a valencia orange close by and it’s fine. What am I looking at, and what is the best treatment? Thanks.

Looks to me like somebody -a larva of something- is eating your leaves- or is it just on the surface?

That’s caused by leaf miners.


Citrus Leaf Miner. I don’t do anything about it on my citrus and they do fine.

Chlorosis is like from iron or magnesium deficiency.

Yup, leaf miner is mostly harmless. Treat with Spinosad if you still want it gone.

For the chlorosis, feed with a citrus fertilizer with complete micronutrients.

Citrus Leaf Miner. They show up for most folks about this time of year, or a little earlier. Tends to affect the more tender leaves. You need to treat systemically with Imidacloprid, about 4-6 weeks prior to these little moths laying their eggs, or spray now, and every 6 weeks through late fall with Spinosad (Spinosad + Neem oil, if your temps are below 85 degrees).

Patty S.

Jeremy, I don’t even want to say it, but as far as the chlorosis goes, you should also keep in mind the possibility of HLB because of your location. That’s not the most common pattern of chlorosis in infected citrus, but the disease can make it difficult for plants to utilize necessary micronutrients. So, it can show up like a mineral deficiency. I hope you’re following whatever recommendations your state has for treating to keep the psyllids down. Also follow the recommendation to keep it fed with proper citrus fertilizer and micronutrients to keep its health up. It’s unfortunate, but having citrus in Florida means being prepared to contend with that devastating disease.

The others are right, leaf miners are more of a cosmetic problem than a threat to the tree’s health. By the time you see their trails, they’ve already damaged the looks of the leaves.

@marknmt there are some signs of the leaves being eaten, but it’s not too bad. Seems more cosmetic then anything else, but I did not get any lemons on the tree this year. It had blossoms and they all pretty much dropped away.

Thanks for all of the information. As suggested I’ll treat for the leaf miners and will also give it a much needed fertilizing. @MuddyMess_8a, you’re right, citrus greening is definitely a possibility, but I have not heard of it being a big problem in out area. That aside, I have not done anything to treat for psyllids, but will start to do so immediately. Hopefully I’m not too late.

Jeremy, I agree with the others that it looks like leaf miners, but when you said shiny trails it reminded me of the trails that snails and slugs leave, so I was wondering if I was missing something.

Looks like you’re on your way to dealing with it.