24 July - Weed techniques

Mare's tail Products containing amitrole, dicamba or MCPA will give good knock-down control but are safer applied to non-crop areas.

Control with products containing glufosinate-aluminium with a hooded sprayer in a crop situation. If you use glyphosate, bruise the weed first to aid uptake.

Red bud mite Ensure that ties are tight during tree budding to prevent mites entering behind buds.

Leaf miner Maintain preventive sprays on young Aesculus spp. using Admire (EAMU 2013-0975), Gazelle SG, dimethoate or Hallmark WZT (EAMU 2008-2944). Pests attack white varieties more than reds.

Western flower thrips Apply Macrocheles or Atheta to composts and Amblyseius cucumeris to foliage. Control large populations by rotating Calypso, Dynamec or Conserve. Re-introduce predators seven-to-10 days after pesticide applications.

Hellebores Apply Cercobin WG (EAMUs and restrictions apply), Octave, Signum (EAMU 2012-2141) or Switch to control leaf spotting caused by Coniothyrium hellebori.

Irrigation If aluminium irrigation pipes or irrigators in fields are laid underneath overhead power lines, get staff to read HSE leaflet GS6 for practical advice before starting.

Top dressing Check nutrient status of older crops and top dress with Floranid Permanent, HortiTop, Sincron or Osmocote Topdress.

Root rots Control and prevent Pythium and Phytophthora spp. infections with drenches of Fenomenal, Prestop (EAMU 2012-0564), Previcur Energy (EAMU 2011-1557), Proplant (EAMU 2012-3100) or Subdue.

Chrysanthemum white rust Check for white, cream, brown or pink pustules on leaf undersides and yellow blotching on top. Keep leaves dry and apply Amistar (EAMU 2009-0443) or Bumper 250EC (EAMUs required) if seen. Protect plants using Karamate Dry Flo Neotec.

Wilt diseases Check aster, dianthus, hebe, penstemon and phlox especially in glasshouses and tunnels where temperatures can get quite high even on dull days. Control using Amistar (EAMU 2009-0443), Octave, Signum (EAMU 2012-2141), Switch or T34 Biocontrol (EAMU 2012-1118).

Iris Control iris corm borers, which cause Erwinia soft rot, using Calypso (EAMUs required), Decis, Dursban WG or Gazelle SG.

John Adlam, Managing director, Dove Associates


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