From the nursery

Western flower thrip Blue roller traps are a good monitoring/control mechanism in glasshouses or tunnels with vulnerable crops such as Passiflora and Clematis.

Leave each trap overnight in a warm place to soften the glue, then set up two lengths of string, tie them to any available posts and attach the trap with clips to keep it straight.

Talius This product is showing great promise on powdery mildew, especially on field-grown trees.

Biological control When biological control is finished, consider products such as Decis, Toppel 10 or Gyro to give a broad-spectrum clean-up of any pests still active under protection. Croptex Spraying Oil as a winter wash will help to control overwintering scale, mealy bug and mites.

Shading Checks should be made every day now to ensure that as much useful light is available to newly potted crops as possible, as we enter the autumn months.

Compost tea Review your tea applications this year. Make notes on any cultural changes carried out this season and put together information on specific brewing techniques so staff can get the brew right first- time.

Pot toppers Pot topping is becoming a more popular method of control with the decreasing range of herbicides available for protected crops. Bark-topping machinery is also now increasingly available, and many growers are using it. Various products have been developed, including bark chips, crushed glass, coir mats, Biotop, coco shells as well as polythene slips, grit and shredded Miscanthus. The effectiveness of the product depends on the time that the crop is present on the nursery.

Poppies The bacteria that cause a black oozing from the flowerheads and stems are still active. If you want to keep the flowerheads they must be sprayed with Croptex Fungex; otherwise remove the heads.

Oxalis If the corms are showing signs of mould at compost level give the tops a spray over with Rovral WP or Bravo 500.

Botrytis Check for this disease this week on crops spaced close together or those with dense foliage. Spray with Frupica SC, Rovral WP, Scotts Octave or Teldor when seen.

Slugs Wet weather encourages this pest, so apply Ferramol pellets to vulnerable plants this week. Parasitic nematodes are also effective in prolonged wet conditions. The formulation for Decoy Wetex makes it effective for longer in field situations.

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