Crop-Adapted Spraying – A Multiyear Study in Highbush Blueberry (2022 Update)

This case study is taking place on a 15 acre highbush blueberry operation in southern Ontario. In 2016, considerable pressure from spotted-wing drosophila (SWD) prompted the growers to make changes to their crop management practices and their spray program. They employed a three-pronged approach to improving crop protection: We have been tracking pesticide use, water […]

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Airblast for small acreage specialty crops

The Carrarospray ATVM (200 L pictured)

In June, 2014, I was invited to Durocher Farm in New Hampshire to see their new airblast sprayer. In years previous, spotted-wing drosophila was a significant pest in this two acre high bush blueberry planting. Since purchasing their new sprayer, they haven’t had any trouble. That’s quite an endorsement! I’m not sure what I expected, […]

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Disease Control in Berry Crops

In the spring of 2016, the Ontario Berry Growers Association (OBGA) conducted a survey of its membership to poll how fungicides were being applied. The results were very interesting. Fungicide basics Generally, fungicides registered for berry crops are contact products, so coverage and timing are very important. The fungicide has to be distributed evenly on the target before […]

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When is Fungicide Coverage Critical? Always!

Strawberry anthracnose. Photo by Pam Fisher, OMAFRA.

Introduction A local strawberry producer was just beginning his harvest when the entire field was suddenly stricken with anthracnose. He would have done almost anything to save it, but he could only watch in frustration as the disease quickly devastated his crop. While he was telling me this story, he was wringing his hands; I’m […]

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Soil Drench Applications in Strawberries

The soil probe. See how far water infiltrates soil by taking core samples.

Article co-written with Pam Fisher, former OMAFRA Berry Crop Specialist, and Anne Verhallen, OMAFRA Soil Management Specialist In 2013, A few strawberry growers were asked what spray volume they used to apply routine pesticides. The results ranged from 250 to 650 l/ha (26.7 to 69.5 US g/ac) for fungicides, herbicides and insecticides. Miticide applications were as high […]

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