New diagnostic testing available

Peters warned that potato growers need to find ways to reduce the level of the black dot pathogen on tubers at harvest.

Speaking at the East Anglian Potato Event, he said new developments in diagnostic testing to assess the level of infective pathogen in the soil - commercially available for the first time this year - now give growers the opportunity to quantify potential black dot risk before planting.

Where the tests identify fields with a medium to high risk of infection, growers could opt to grow a shorter-season crop or use new agronomic techniques to reduce stem numbers.

They could also grow a higher proportion of larger tubers in a shorter period, for example.

Assessing the risk of black dot, which increases with each successive potato crop and shorter rotations, will also help to justify Amistar applications on susceptible crops, Peters reported.

He said: "Soil treatment at planting knocks back the population of the black dot pathogen and slows its development in the growing crop; it effectively buys the grower extra time at the end of the season before infection builds up.

"However, the final result will always be highly dependent on the soil conditions throughout the season."


Have you registered with us yet?

Register now to enjoy more articles and free email bulletins

Sign up now
Already registered?
Sign in

Before commenting please read our rules for commenting on articles.

If you see a comment you find offensive, you can flag it as inappropriate. In the top right-hand corner of an individual comment, you will see 'flag as inappropriate'. Clicking this prompts us to review the comment. For further information see our rules for commenting on articles.

comments powered by Disqus

Read These Next

How should fruit growers prepare for water abstraction reform?

How should fruit growers prepare for water abstraction reform?

Upcoming reforms to water abstraction licensing will for the first time cap the amount of water that fruit growers can take for trickle irrigation.

Getting a measure of the production labour crisis

Getting a measure of the production labour crisis

At a debate during last week's Fruit Focus trade show in Kent, senior industry figures painted a bleak picture of an increasingly difficult seasonal labour market that is already impacting on investment.

What will post-Brexit pesticides authorisation and capital support for fresh produce look like?

What will post-Brexit pesticides authorisation and capital support for fresh produce look like?

The likely impact on seasonal labour has dominated discussions of the consequences of withdrawal from the EU for UK production horticulture.


Follow us on:
  • Facebook
  • LinkedIn
  • Twitter
  • Google +
Horticulture Jobs
More Horticulture Jobs

Pest & Disease Tracker bulletin 

The latest pest and disease alerts, how to treat them, plus EAMU updates, sent direct to your inbox.

Sign up here

Professor Geoffrey Dixon

GreenGene International chair Geoff Dixon on the business of fresh produce production
 

Read Professor Geoffrey Dixon