Include biological controls plus bioactive products such as DiPel DF, Naturalis-L, Prestop (EAMU 2012-0564), Serenade ASO (EAMUs required), Trianum and T34 Biocontrol (EAMU 2012-1118) where possible. Check other pesticides used for compatibility with foliarand soil-applied predators. "Short persistence" can realistically mean up to 14 days.
Feeds On older crops, check compost and water conductivity now and again in March for nutrient availability. Plants may need a top dressing or liquid feed boost going into spring depending on the type of slow-release fertiliser used in composts. Slow-release products such as Osmocote Top-Dress and Floranid Permanent will avoid leaf scorch issues. Include supplementary feeding of plants that show deficiencies of iron, magnesium, nitrogen or calcium during the growing season.
Pesticides Ensure that products you are sold have an approval for ornamental plant production or forest nursery depending on your sector. Some active ingredients are still being assessed so some products can still be used without an ornamentals approval until they have been assessed by the CRD - Apollo 50SC, Dursban WG, Sequel. Where specific active ingredients have been assessed, only a few have got ornamental EAMUs - Chess WG for ornamentals and Plenum WG for forest nurseries.
Servicing Service and recalibrate all spray equipment including pressure gauges, measuring scales, jugs and syringes. Check for worn parts, leaky hoses, sticking gauges and blocked nozzles. Use the NSTS to test older equipment under the Sustainable Use Directive.
Stored growing media If you use compost that has been stored for some time, check the conductivity to avoid root damage at potting. High conductivity in substrate means there is little left in controlled-release fertiliser prills.
Whitefly Control overwintering pests using contact-acting products including Agri-50E, Decis, Eradicoat, Majestik, SB Plant Invigorator, Hallmark WZT (EAMU 2008-2944), Pyrethrum 5EC, Savona, Spruzit or Toppel 100 (EAMU 2013-2410). Avoid frost before, during and after applications. Do not use synthetic pyrethroids after January to avoid interference with IPM.
Botrytis Keep ventilating protected structures. Control infections using Octave, Rovral WG (EAMUs required) and Serenade ASO (EAMUs required). Direct sprays at the base of the plant and include a wetting agent.
Paperwork Update spray records and pest, disease and weed control programmes. Make sure that applications were carried out in line with your annual spray programme.
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