From the nursery

Aphids - These pests are still alive on some protected crops and acers. Control at this time of the year can often be effective by the use of smokes or fogging as it reduces the amount of water you apply to the crop. Smokes available include Fumite Pirimiphos Methyl Smoke (approval ends September 2009) or Nicotine 40% Shreds. If you spray, you can use Chess WG, Decis, Majestik, SB Plant Invigorator or Stalwart.

Fleece - Covering plants at night with white fleece is superior to polythene for frost protection. There are several grades of fleece available so choose one with adequate thickness for your requirements.

Whitefly - Control any active adults outside with applications of Hallmark WZT, Toppel 10 or Decis and Gyro, Majestik or SB Plant Invigorator on protected crops. Don't use Gyro after January if you intend to introduce IPM next season. Outside, make sure you avoid spraying just before a frost to prevent foliage damage.

Heaters - At this time of year growers call me to report leaf scorch on heated crops under protection. Ensure that if you are using a paraffin (28 sec) heater that is direct fired (where the flame goes straight into the structure and not through a chimney) and that you only use premium grade paraffin with low sulphur content. This is particularly important if we have snow or the tunnels are shut up for extended periods.

Weed control - Use the milder days to spray diquat (eg Reglone), glufosinate-ammonium (eg Harvest) or carfentrazone-ethyl (Shark) over dormant herbaceous perennials. This will kill off the leftover weeds from last season and give you a clean start to the season. The application of the residual herbicides to field-grown crops such as Devrinol, Stomp 400 SC, Flexidor 125, Kerb formulations or Butisan S can be carried out on suitable spraying days. Avoid spraying residual herbicides during periods of heavy rainfall.

Powdery mildew - Some protected crops are still being affected by this disease. Consider food-grade potassium bicarbonate or Stroby WG for effective control at this time of year.

Botrytis - Check that the ventilation fans are all running in tunnels and glasshouses; this is one of the most important times for them to be fully operational. Open the doors of your tunnels at least once a day for a short period to change the air and control the humidity.

John Adlam is managing director of Dove Associates

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



These compact, brightly coloured flowers can be very attractive for impulse sales, notes Miranda Kimberley.

Fertilisers Special Report - invaluable nutrition

Fertilisers Special Report - invaluable nutrition

Using the right fertilisers on your crops can make all the difference when it comes to securing repeat customers, Sally Drury advises.

IPM Essen Show Preview - New look for top trade fair

IPM Essen Show Preview - New look for top trade fair

Venue modernisation will mean better display space for exhibitors at Europe's largest trade fair for the horticulture industry, says Gavin McEwan.

Opinion... Gardening needs better promotion

Opinion... Gardening needs better promotion

British horticultural firms and organisations have not been the best at working together to promote our industry.

Opinion... A wish list for unblinkered thinking

Opinion... A wish list for unblinkered thinking

Opinion... A wish list for unblinkered thinking

Opinion... A wish list for unblinkered thinking

Generations of ordinary British people have been let down by weak, visionless leaders -- politicians more engaged by the next election than our national best interest.

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

Tim Edwards

Boningales Nursery chairman Tim Edwards on the business of ornamentals production

Read Tim Edwards

Ornamentals ranking

Top 30 Ornamentals Nurseries by Turnover 2017

Top 30 Ornamentals Nurseries by Turnover 2017

Tough retail pricing policies and Brexit opportunities drive the top 30 growth strategies.

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

Are you a landscape supplier?

Horticulture Week Landscape Project Leads

If so, you should be receiving our new service for Horticulture Week subscribers delivering landscape project leads from live, approved, planning applications across the UK.

Peter Seabrook

Inspiration and insight from travels around the horticultural world

Read more Peter Seabrook articles