Agronomy Update – March 26

Hi everyone.  What a lovely week of weather!  Great to see the sun and experience some warm temperatures this week.  Lots of snow has disappeared and ground is thawing out.  Perhaps we’ll be on track for an early spring…time will tell.

Crop Rotation Webinar – Video Online:

Thank you to those that attended our webinar with Aaron Mills yesterday.  For those that weren’t able to tune in yesterday morning, a recording is available on our YouTube channel HERE.


New Chemistry Options:

There has been a flurry of new chemistry options recently that increase the size of the toolbox for most potato growers.  It’s nice to have some new options, rather than always losing products.  Below are a few products to be aware of…this is not a comprehensive list and I am not endorsing any of these products…just making producers aware of them.

Cimegra (BASF) | Info Sheet

  • Active ingredient: broflanilide
  • New wireworm insecticide, applied in-furrow, liquid
  • Research (done as part of National Potato Cluster) indicates that it performs as good or better than Thimet at controlling wireworms.  Appears to have longer residual soil activity and actually kills wireworms in PEI.
  • Has recently been added to Cavendish Farms approved pesticide list, so should be able to be used by most Island producers.

Miravis Duo (Syngenta) | Info Sheet

  • Active ingredients:  adepidyn (new chemistry) and difenoconazole
  • Foliar fungicide to control early blight and brown spot and suppress bortrytis grey mould and white mould
  • A new Alternaria option to rotate with other products with different mode of action.

Scala (Bayer) | Info Sheet

  • Active ingredient: pyrimethanil (group 9)
  • Foliar fungicide to control early blight and grey mould
  • Presentation this winter from NDSU showed Scala to have similar level of protection to other targeted early blight fungicides

Zidua SC (BASF) | Info Sheet

  • Active ingredient:  pyroxasulfone (group 15)
  • Pre-emerge herbicide, can be tank mixed with Sencor or glyphosate
  • Controls redroot pigweed, multiple grasses.  US studies have also indicated some control of nightshades. Listed as suppression of lamb’s quarters

Cevya (BASF) | Info Sheet

  • Active ingredient:  Mefentrifluzonazole (group 3)
  • For control of early blight
  • Another rotation option for early blight, particularly if you are seeing any resistance to other chemistries

Vayego (Bayer) | Info Sheet

  • Active ingredient:  Tetraniliprole (group 28)
  • Foliar insecticide. Label indicates control of Colorado potato beetle, European corn borer, flea beetles
  • Suppression of aphids
  • 2nd generation diamide insecticide

As always, please consult the label for all pesticides before use, and talk to your crop protection product supplier to talk about availability.


Operation Pollinator:

I still have some room for more farms to be involved in Operation Pollinator, where farmers can apply to grow up to 2 acres of a 6 species forage mix friendly to pollinator species on small parcels of land (wet spots, around the barns, grassed waterways, etc).

The Board will be accepting applications from up to 25 farms to participate this year.  Participating farms will have the seed supplied as well as a $200/acre payment to assist with establishment/maintenance of the pollinator refuge.  Participating farms will then have a site visit in the summer to document the establishment of the pollinator refuge, and we will present you with a small Operation Pollinator sign.

If interested in this program, contact me ASAP with the anticipated size of your pollinator refuge site (up to 2 acres total).  First come, first served.  Seed will be delivered in April.


Looking Ahead at 2021 Trials:

I’m looking for a few growers that would be interested in the following trials:

  • Subsoiling ahead of the planter (same GPS lines as potato rows)
  • Field scale evaluation of different seed sizes/types

Feel free to give me a call to discuss further!

Have a great weekend!