February 11, 2011

Companion Fungicide Receives California Registration

Companion liquid biological fungicide recently received registration in California for turfgrass and landscape use. Manufactured by Growth Products, Companion effectively prevents, controls and suppresses a broad range of root and foliar diseases, including pythium and phytophthora. Companion, the first first EPA-approved biofungicide, contains the powerful but environmentally friendly GB03 strain of Bacillus subtilis, which prevents and controls plant diseases through multiple modes of action. GB03 produces a broad-spectrum antibiotic that disrupts pathogen cell-wall formation, and it stimulates a plant’s natural immune system. A competitive and fast-colonizing rhizobacterium, GB03 also crowds out pathogens to prevent their growth and antagonistic effects. Because Companion is not a chemical fungicide but rather a biological fungicide, pathogens do not develop disease resistance. This makes Companion an ideal component of a disease management program. Companion can be used in rotation with chemical fungicides or can be tank mixed with smaller amounts of chemical fungicides for improved […]

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January 21, 2011

Expanded Label for ZeroTol In California

ZeroTol broad-spectrum algaecide/fungicide has an updated label in California. The expanded label includes new applications for treatment of hard surfaces and greenhouse tools and equipment to prevent the spread of algal and fungal growth. In addition, ZeroTol is now labeled to treat several new organisms, including black spot, downy and powdery mildew, leaf spot, pseudomonas and xanthomonas, among others. With these new updates, the full ZeroTol label is now available to California growers. For more information about ZeroTol, contact BioSafe Systems at 1-888-273-3088 or visit the company online at BioSafeSystems.com.

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December 13, 2010

OHP Unveils Disarm O Fungicide

OHP‘s Disarm O is a broad-spectrum foliar and drench systemic fungicide that offers control of many troublesome foliar diseases, as well as soil-borne diseases like rhizoctonia and phytophthora. Among the foliar diseases controlled by Disarm O are anthracnose, powdery mildew, rusts and leaf spots. Disarm O may be used on plants growing in containers, benches, flats, plugs and beds in greenhouses, shadehouses, nurseries and interiorscapes. Rigorous testing has shown excellent plant safety. Disarm O, a member of the strobilurin class of fungicides. “Most strobilurins are strongest as foliar disease control products,” says Jeff Dobbs, OHP’s technical services director. “Disarm O is not only strong as a foliar disease control product but also offers control of soil-borne diseases.” OHP will continue to add additional soil-borne diseases to the Disarm O specimen label. “We are proud to bring yet another winning product to the horticulture market,” says Terry Higgins, OHP vice president […]

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November 30, 2010

Rotate Or Tank Mix To Avoid Resistance

In this, the final article in our series on making the most of your fungicide dollars, I am considering fungicide resistance management. There are some key topics that should be addressed, and I am covering them by answering questions. Obviously, if your fungicide fails due to resistance, your dollars are wasted. Which pathogens become resistant the quickest? The pathogens that become resistant to fungicides most quickly are those that reproduce quickly and in high numbers. These include powdery mildew fungi (e.g. Oidium), downy mildew fungi (e.g. Peronospora), Botrytis, Pythium, Phytophthora and bacteria (e.g. Pseudomonas, Xanthomonas, Erwinia, etc.). It is interesting that although bacteria develop resistance to copper quite readily, fungi don’t seem to. The FRAC (Fungicide Resistance Action Committee) actually has copper listed as low risk of resistance development. Which fungicides are most likely to have resistance concerns? In this case, the more narrow the mode of action the more […]

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November 30, 2010

When To Light and When To Shade: Ready Research Results

Plants increase in mass, or dry weight, through photosynthesis. Photosynthesis is the process that harvests light energy to drive critical processes resulting in plant growth. Why is increasing photosynthesis important? Increased photosynthesis is associated with increased flowering, increased plant quality and increased post-harvest life. How much, or how fast, a plant can photosynthesize depends on light intensity, carbon dioxide and temperature. Although much work was done during the 1960s and ’70s, there is little recent research on how changing light intensity, carbon dioxide and/or temperature affect photosynthesis of commonly grown greenhouse crops today. For this reason, we started a research project at the University of Minnesota with support from the Floriculture and Nursery Research Initiative and the American Floral Endowment to provide growers with answers to questions such as: How much supplemental light should I add to maximize photosynthesis? What is the impact on photosynthesis of adding supplemental carbon dioxide? […]

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August 23, 2010

Krause Joins BioWorks Product Development Team

Matthew Krause has joined the BioWorks product development team. Krause, a native of Ohio, is a three-time graduate of Ohio State University, where he gained his multiple degrees. He holds a bachelor’s in ag business and applied economics, along with a Masters in plant pathology. For the past nine years Krause has resided in Belgium and worked as a senior plant pathologist. He has also worked as an associate research leader in the Microbial Process Ecology and Management Program at the KU Leuven University College De Nayer Institute. As the product development specialist at BioWorks, Krause will work to develop emerging technologies into new products, implement commercialization efforts to support the launching of new products and maintain existing products in the market.

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August 23, 2010

Getting The Most From Your Fungicides: Application Rate, Interval & Timing

I am sure you’re thinking the headline is somewhat dull, but if you do not pay attention to these aspects of disease control, you will be wasting a lot of money and wind up irritated. This article is part of the series to make the most of your fungicide/bactericide dollars in order to keep your profit margin up. I hope the thoughts I pass on will help some of you make better, more cost-effective decisions regarding fungicide/bactericide use. Does Rate Really Matter? I always ask which rates are being used to treat a disease before I try to suggest a control strategy. It is interesting to me how often the rates being used are too low to be effective. You might as well be spraying water if you use too low a rate. Remember, water is not neutral but something fungi and bacteria thrive on. So spraying very low rates […]

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July 30, 2010

Benchpress Q&A: Jan Buberl

BASF hosted a media summit June 8-10 to discuss sustainability as a grounded approach for growers. At the summit, Greenhouse Grower caught up with Jan Buberl, director of specialty products at BASF, who outlined the chemical company’s sustainability initiatives. Q What factors is BASF taking into account to determine which products are sustainable and which are not? A To determine whether a product is sustainable or not, you have to put that product into the whole context of the production system. Take the example of a greenhouse: A lot of different factors enter the equation. (BASF’s) Eco-Efficiency Analysis system analyzes the full footprint of the value chain, from the production of the active ingredient to the final outcome of the product. We take a lot of different aspects of conservation into account–the use of water, energy and land–to determine the eco-efficiency of our products. Q Is it the supplier’s role […]

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July 19, 2010

MSU Diagnostic Services Offering Free Late Blight Testing

Late blight disease in tomatoes and potatoes could become a problem this summer, so Michigan State University (MSU) Diagnostic Services is offering free late blight testing to Michigan home gardeners and commercial growers. Free testing will also be available in the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources (CANR) tent from 10 a.m. to noon during Ag Expo, MSU’s outdoor farm show, July 20-22, on Mt. Hope Road in East Lansing. Because a cool, wet spring has made widespread development of the disease possible in the state this year, growers should become familiar with the symptoms of late blight and other common tomato and potato diseases, according to Jan Byrne, plant pathologist and diagnostician at Diagnostic Services. “The late blight pathogen can infect both stems and foliage of tomatoes and potatoes,” she says. “The first symptoms are dark green, water-soaked areas. These areas quickly turn dark brown and the plant tissue […]

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June 22, 2010

Getting The Most From Your Fungicides Part 3: Diagnosis & Application

Are you still guessing which products to use on a disease? Are you even sure you are treating diseases and not environmental, nutritional or even phytotoxicity look-a-likes? I have spent years trying to convince growers they can actually save money if they work with a lab to make sure what they think is a disease and which one it is. In this article I will, hopefully, get you to think more about using a rifle approach to disease control and not the popular shotgun approach. It can save you a lot of money if you use only the best product for the actual problem at hand. Getting Started The first step is always to know what the actual problem is. A lab diagnosis is the best way to determine the problem you are facing. This must be done before the fungicide program is chosen. This time, I will attempt to […]

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June 21, 2010

Late Blight Makes An Appearance

Tom Ford, a Penn State Cooperative Extension agent covering Cambria and Somerset counties in Pennsylvania, responded to a call at a community garden in Blair County earlier this month. According to the Tribune-Democrat, Ford confirmed 50 to 75 tomato plants were infected with late blight. “I am actually very worried at this point,” Ford told the Tribune-Democrat. “If it gets warm and dry we may be OK, but these little cold fronts are especially bad for Cambria and Somerset because of the mountain areas. “It’s just a matter of time before we see more.” Late blight-infected plants were traced to a retail greenhouse in Somerset County, creating concern that many gardeners in Cambria County may have some of the infected plants, Ford says. Penn State officials are not identifying the Somerset business that sold the infected plants. Read the full Tribune-Democrat story here.

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June 3, 2010

Augeo Launch At Pack Trials

Many current PGRs are used for reducing height or crop stretch. Augeo works with the plant’s ability to release lower lateral buds and thus increase lateral branching. Augeo focuses on the young growing points of a plant (leaves and meristem). Augeo works like a chemical pinch and the end result is a reduction of the natural plant hormone auxin and the role it plays in holding back lower buds. With auxin production decreased, lower buds release, and the result is reduced apical dominance. Recent testing of Augeo has shown it to increase branching in herbaceous and woody type crops such as lantana, petunia, fuchsia, verbena and other crops including trees and shrubs. Growers are always looking for ways to increase the value of their crops. Augeo can help to improve a plants’ appearance by creating a thicker, fuller plant which is appealing to both growers and consumers. That’s just one […]

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