Disease Control and Plant Health

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Over the last several years many nursery and greenhouse growers have felt increasing financial and environmental pressure to make sustainability-driven improvements to reduce inputs —including water, chemicals and fuel — but reductions must not sacrifice plant quality. Fulfilling sustainable needs and business demands is challenging, but not impossible.

Like growers, BASF views sustainability as achieving more using fewer inputs, while ensuring profitability, caring for the environment, and meeting the needs of society and future generations, in short, doing more with less. BASF research and development continually brings new innovations to market that help growers be more successful.

Recent examples of this research and development include its pyraclostrobin-based product Pageant® Intrinsic™ brand fungicide. Pageant Intrinsic is the first fungicide in the ornamental market labeled for disease control and plant health. It gives growers industry-leading, broad-spectrum disease control and the bonus of plant health activity — without additional inputs.

In addition to controlling a broad spectrum of diseases such as powdery mildews, rusts, scabs, crown and basal rots, BASF research has shown that Pageant Intrinsic activates a plant’s defenses, making it better prepared to defend itself when pathogens attack.
Pageant Intrinsic supports the entire plant during stress events, such as heat, drought, and cold, as well as stresses like shipping, which helps growers get more out of their fungicide application.
Examples of Pageant Intrinsic plant health benefits from current research include:
•  Petunia response to cold temperature extremes and drought with improved recovery.
•  Geranium response to cold temperature extremes and drought with improved recovery.
•  Impatiens sustained through cold temperature extremes with improved recovery.
• Pansy response to drought with improved recovery.

In addition, our research proves Pageant Intrinsic-treated petunia, geranium, impatiens and pansy have an overall higher plant quality rating, increased fresh weight and decreased number of damaged leaves than untreated plants. In most cases, applications of Pageant Intrinsic can be made as far out as seven days before stress, and benefits are visible for up to seven days post-stress.

The pressure to sustainably nurture quality plants seems greater than ever, leaving growers with even more to worry about. Pageant Intrinsic brand fungicide helps growers get more value from disease control applications, which improves peace of mind.

Next month in Greenhouse Grower we will share results of field research with Pageant Intrinsic.

Thavy Staal is the marketing manager for BASF Professional Turf & Ornamentals.
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