Practical findings from Horticultural Development Council trial, plus summaries of academic research and scientific trials, compiled by Dr Ken Cockshull.
PE 029 Protected tomato: Evaluation of biological treatments, biocides and an improved diagnostic for control of root mat disease.
Adjusting the light wavelengths and intensity of LEDs can improve crop yields and quality, according to latest research findings.
FV 439 Cucurbits: Identifying pre-harvest, harvest and post-harvest management practices capable of reducing losses of pumpkins during storage.
Canker, caused by the fungus Neonectria ditissima, is one of the most important diseases of apple and pear, causing cankers and die back of young shoots and a fruit rot that can result in significant losses as high as 10% or more in stored fruit.
PE 024: Basil - Improving knowledge and control of downy mildew in protected and outdoor crops
UK poinsettia growers have traditionally relied on relatively few varieties. Infinity accounts for about 80 per cent of the national crop, the remainder made up by varieties such as Christmas Feeling, Christmas Glory, Prima and Titan.
A serious pest of all brassica crops, diamondback moth (DBM) has a very rapid life cycle, particularly at warm temperatures, which contributes to its potential to develop insecticide resistance.
The majority of container-grown hardy nursery stock in the UK receives some form of controlled-release fertiliser as a source of longer-term nutrition.
Soil is one of the most important assets a grower has and improving its health is fundamental to the agronomic and financial sustainability of horticultural enterprises.
A recently completed Defra Horticulture LINK Project (HL01107-SF 120) demonstrated that commercial control of western flower thrips (WFT) in strawberry can be obtained through early and continued releases of the predatory mite Neoseiulus cucumeris in conjunction with Stratiolaelaps scimitus mites and Orius bugs during the summer months while employing an IPM programme that avoids crop-protection products harmful to these predators.
PC 281b Tomato: Micro-organisms in the irrigation water of hydroponic crops grown in closed systems.
In response to increased UK production of Gala apples, the industry needed to develop improved storage protocols to maintain fruit quality and improve flavour retention from harvest through until June.
Sporgon (prochloraz-manganese), the only approved fungicide available to the UK mushroom industry, provides good control of wet bubble (Mycogone perniciosa), moderate control of dry bubble (Lecanicillium fungicola) and weak control of cobweb (Cladobotryum species).
The only reliable current control method for the soil-borne disease Fusarium oxysporum in cut-flower production is steam sterilisation, but this is expensive, time-consuming and large losses can still occur even where the soil has been treated.
Spye Farm Ltd Wiltshire
Private Estate - Maidstone Near Maidstone, Kent
Green Space and Bereavement Services Manager - Neighbourhood Services
Bridgend County Borough Council Bridgend, Bridgend (Pen-y-bont ar Ogwr)
Horticultural Marketing Officer
The Scottish Government Edinburgh & Glasgow
Parks & Open Spaces Improvement Officer
East Devon District Council Knowle, Sidmouth, Devon