Agronomy Update – Sept 2

My update is a day late this week as we had an AIM field tour yesterday in King County.  I had hoped to have two tours today…but the heavy rain that is currently coming down obviously delayed those plans.  More on those rescheduled tours below.  Thanks to everyone who came out to the tour in the east yesterday afternoon.

Generally the crop is looking good and has lots of potential to finish up.  Quite a bit of chip stock and seed has been top killed or will be quite soon.  Many of the long-season processing varieties still have some bulking to do, but the plants are generally healthy and there is still time for bulking.  That being said, I did pull 10 foot samples with up to 300 cwt/acre on Tuesday in varieties that are still quite green.  The lowest yields were around 200 cwt/ac, mostly on Burbanks that are still quite green.  Lots of potential for a good crop.  In terms of quality, hearing a few reports about hollow heart and growth cracks, but haven’t seen much of that myself.


Spore Trapping / Disease Update:

Spornado Results for Monday, August 30th:  All sites negative for Late Blight

Airspore Results for Monday, August 30th:  All sites negative for Late Blight

Airspore Results for Alternaria/Bortrytis (Sept 1st)

Location Early Blight
(A. solani)
Brown Spot
(A. alternata)
Bortrytis cinerea
West Prince (ave of 6 sites) 2 0 2267
East Prince (ave of 1 sites) 13 0 240
Queens (ave of 2 sites) 11 5 2505
Eastern Kings (3 sites) 1 0 501

As you can see, there has been a big spike in Bortrytis spore counts this week.  I’ve seen some evidence of grey mold in the bottom of the canopy in a couple of fields.  Keep an eye on your fields as we get toward the end of the growing season, and consider going with chlorothanonil (Bravo/Echo) for one of your September fungicide sprays if worried about Bortrytis.

I have heard a couple of reports of white mold (Sclerotinia) showing up in potatoes this year.  We discussed this in the Fieldworkers Meeting this week, and Rick Peters of AAFC noted that we may see more white mold in varieties that keep flowering for an extended period of time (ie. Mountain Gem Russet).  Something to keep an eye on as we finish up the season.


SpudChat this week:

This week, SpudChat provides a bit of an overview of what the crop is looking like across the province, as well as looking ahead at rescheduled AIM tours for next Tuesday.  It should be live by tomorrow!


Rescheduled AIM Tours for Next Tuesday:

Tuesday, September 7thAIM Central Tour

 9:00 am  Hwy 1A across from McCain Fertilizer Plant in Middleton (Crop Rotation and Nitrogen Rate Trials)

10:00 am  Delaney Road, North Bedeque (Fall Cover Crops and Compaction Detection/Mitigation)

11:00 am  Old Station Road, New Annan (Biofumigant Mustard)


Tuesday, September 7thAIM Western Tour

2:00 pm  First field on the right, Dunbar Road, Alma (PED Legume Trial)

3:00 pm  3905 O’Leary Road, Springfield West (AIM Phys Age Trial, Mustard Trial, Variable Rate Seeding)


I hope that the rain doesn’t come down too hard today and tomorrow and that the crop can use that moisture effectively.  Hopefully the added soil moisture will assist with pre-potato tillage and cover cropping.