The NOSB’s ‘lose-lose’ decision

  • May 15th, 2013

A decision by the National Organic Standards Board not to extend use of a key antibiotic to control fireblight in organic fruit production represents a loss for both producers and consumers, says Harold Austin, an NOSB board member.

The antibiotic oxytetracyline will no longer be approved for use on organic [...]

Pest pressures challenge organics future

  • May 1st, 2013

The favorable climate and relatively low pest and disease pressure in the arid West have been blessings for organic tree fruit growers. Those conditions explain why more than 95 percent of the nation’s organic apple production comes from Washington, California, Arizona, Colorado, and Oregon. But increasing pest challenges and [...]

  • New grape disease reduces yields, quality

New grape disease reduces yields, quality

  • April 1st, 2013

Left: A Merlot grapevine shows redleaf symptoms on mature leaves in the lower portions of the canopy. Symptoms are easily confused with grapevine leafroll disease. Right: Cabernet Franc clusters from a single vine show infection on the left, nonsymptomatic cluster on the right.

A new disease that threatens the health [...]

  • Developing a disease management program

Developing a disease management program

  • March 15th, 2013

Washington State University viticulture extension specialist Dr. Michelle Moyer suggests growers consider the following when developing a ­disease management program:

•    Reproductive rate of the pathogen. How fast can the disease reproduce in your vineyard? Is weather conducive to reproduction?
•    Speed of your reaction time. Do you have enough [...]

  • Living with cherry diseases

Living with cherry diseases

  • March 15th, 2013

Little cherry disease made a dramatic resurgence in Washington in 2010 and has since spread rapidly. These Sweetheart cherries show symptoms of small and puny fruit.
PHOTO BY KEN EASTWELL

With no cure for cherry trees infected with most viruses—short of cutting them out of the orchard—Washington State University researchers [...]

Preventing mildew

  • March 15th, 2013

Guide for grape pest management available
Washington State University’s 2013 Grape Pest Management Guide includes recommendations for controlling insects, weeds, diseases, and other pests. The guide also includes results of 2012 fungicide efficacy trials, a table with Fungicide Resistance Action Committee (FRAC) codes for resistance management, and suggestions of [...]

  • Working with copper

Working with copper

  • March 15th, 2013

Copper is a potent spray chemical, useful on many stone and pome fruits. It is active against bacterial diseases like fireblight, bacterial canker, and bacterial spot, and fungal diseases like cherry leaf spot, peach leaf curl, and apple scab as well.

Used correctly, copper sprays, especially very early in the [...]

  • Kill the pathogen

Kill the pathogen

  • March 15th, 2013

Apple scab is a serious problem in humid climates, and McIntosh is very susceptible. Lesions occur on both leaves and fruit.
PHOTO COURTESY OF GEORGE SUNDIN

Apple growers have three new fungicides they can use to control apple scab, and Dr. George Sundin would like to see growers keep them.

“Use [...]

  • Bacterial canker

Bacterial canker

  • March 1st, 2013

The weather turned hot and dry—­conditions conducive to healing the cuts without making the canker situation worse. Then, the recommended approach was to make two fall sprays of copper, with two more copper sprays recommended before bud break this spring.
12 STEPS TO MANAGE BACTERIAL CANKER
In Oregon, bacterial [...]

  • Growers have several choices in fireblight control

Growers have several choices in fireblight control

  • February 15th, 2013

Pear and apple orchardists have a fairly broad field of products to use in controlling fireblight—and it should get even more crowded in the coming year with new registrations anticipated, says an Oregon State University plant pathologist.

Several new products have registrations pending and could be registered in 2013, said [...]

  • Fireblight, antibiotics, and the NOSB

Fireblight, antibiotics, and the NOSB

  • February 15th, 2013

Antibiotics have long been key disease control materials for fireblight, one of the few uses of antibiotics in plant agriculture. These materials are natural compounds produced by naturally occurring soil microorganisms. For the past several decades, the most common control for fireblight has been the use of antibiotic sprays [...]

  • Last Bite

Last Bite

  • February 15th, 2013

1  Which of the following is not a fruit symptom of little cherry disease?
a.    Small size
b.    Poor color
c.    High acids
d.    Poor shape

2    Which of the following rootstocks is not resistant to fireblight?
a.    Geneva 41
b.    Budagovsky 9
c.    PiAu-56-83
d.    Malling 26

3     What [...]