1 April - Midges and eelworm

Field trees Apply Gazelle SG, Hallmark WZT (EAMU 2008-2944) or Vydate 10G (EAMUs required) in the next few weeks to help prevent oak tip midge damage on young field-grown oaks and pea galls forming on Gleditsia foliage.

Eelworm Apply Vydate 10G (EAMU 2014-1636) to Abelia, Anemone, Brunnera, Buddleja, hellebores and Weigela crops now to control leaf and stem nematodes that overwintered from last year. Trial on a small number of plants first to check for phytotoxicity. Consider also Movento (EAMU 2011-1987) as a good alternative, especially with the Vydate 10G approval ending in December.

Disease control Check for lavender shab (Phoma), Botrytis on protected crops including paeonies, and leaf spots. Include any plants that have been previously damaged in a cold spell using Octave, Rovral WG (EAMU 2011-3200), Signum (EAMU 2012-2141) or Switch.

Mites Apollo 50SC (EAMU 2015-2102) is a useful product to apply at this time of year as a clean-up on outdoor crops. Note the "harvest interval" on this EAMU, which is 35 days. For protected crops, use predators soon in conjunction with Dynamec, Majestik, Naturalis-L and SB Plant Invigorator. Some of these products can temporarily affect predator populations. Where foliage is not touching, make sure that predator numbers are increased to compensate.

Feeding Water composts with an iron chelate EDDHA at the rate of 100g per 10 litres of water diluted at 1:200. EDTA chelates do not work so well as a drench. Apply to Ceanothus, Cytisus and Potentilla as well as crops looking yellow.

Vine weevil Apply Steinernema kraussei (Nemasys L) into previously untreated or vulnerable crops to control larvae. Note that Dursban WG (non-IPM) cannot now be drenched into non-edible and selected edible crops - the ban is now in force. Adult pests can be controlled using Chess WG (EAMU 2013-2016), Hallmark WZT (non-IPM, EAMU 2008-2944) or Explicit (EAMU 2011-2090) according to label and off-label restrictions.

Rust Control on Heuchera, Fuchsia and other vulnerable crops using Amistar (EAMU 2009-0443), Bumper 250EC (only compatible Fuchsia varieties, EAMU 2014-1274), Signum (EAMU 2012-2141) or Systhane 20EW.

Sticky traps These should be installed and monitored now.

Pest watch Soft, lush foliage is at greater risk of pest attack now.

Sequel This product (MAPP 12657) must be used up by 31 May this year. An EAMU is required for protected ornamentals. It is a useful early-summer mite control so use stocks while you can.

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