Agronomy Update – March 4th

Hi everyone,

I hope that you all had a great weekend.  We sure lost a lot of snow late last week and over the weekend, with the majority of fields now mostly bare.  It looks like a mild stretch ahead of us for the next couple of weeks.  You can really tell how much soil even a late-established cover crop will hold compared with fields with no cover crop after a big week of melting.  Some of the rye and winter wheat is already greening up with plus temperatures.


Videos from Potato Expo / Chad Berry Meetings:

Videos from the International Potato Tech Expo Conference as well as our AIM Workshops with Chad Berry are available on the PEI Potato Agronomy Site under Seminars/Workshop Presentations.  Thank you to all who attended these sessions…I hope that you found value in them or can take the time to watch the videos when you have a free moment.

I have created a very short survey on Survey Monkey to get feedback on our 2024 AIM Local Workshops.  If you attended any of the three workshops this winter or could not attend but would like to provide feedback on future workshops, please complete the anonymous survey.


PVY Aphicide Resistance Report:

At the early February AIM Seed workshops, I shared results from a project we completed with the ACS Lab in Fredericton looking at whether aphids trapped in PEI were showing signed of insecticide resistance to the pyrethroid (group 3) insecticides that have been commonly used in spray programs here for many years.  We sampled aphids that were trapped throughout the summer of 2022 for genetic markers that indicate resistance.

Key results:

  • 100% of Green Peach Aphids in the study had at least one gene for resistance. This is important, as we have seen large numbers of green peach aphids in the late summer the last two seasons.  Green Peach Aphids are a high risk vector for the spread of PVY and PLRV.
  • Between 20 and 45% of early season aphids (July 4-18th) also had at least one gene for resistance. This is before Green Peach aphids were present.  Instead, these would largely be non-colonizing aphids such as Bird Cherry Oat aphids and other species.
  • Growers would be advised to rely on other groups of aphicides for control of aphids, particularly late in the season when Green Peach aphids start to arrive.
  • Pyrethroid insecticides include (but are not limited to) Decis, Matador, and Silencer.
  • A full report on this project is available on the Agronomy Site.

I hope to see some of you this week at Soil & Crop meetings in Summerside.  We still have a month of “meeting season” to go, with a number of useful workshops and sessions scheduled between now and then.