By Vikram Bisht and Xiaowei Guo MAFRD
Desiccation in seed potato fields started in Manitoba during the second week of August. Photo courtesy of MAFRD.
Aug. 25, 2014, Manitoba – Potato crops are doing well throughout the province, report Vikram Bisht and Xiaowei Guo with the potato and horticultural crops department at Manitoba Agriculture, Foods and Rural Development, in the latest potato disease report.
With lack of rain, the heat in the last week may have affected some non-irrigated fields. Most process fields are irrigated and they are being continuously watered. The rainfall last weekend brought relief to the dry conditions in some areas. Approximately 55 millimetres, 30 millimetres and 22 millimetres of rainfall were added in the some areas in Portage la Prairie, Carman and Carberry, respectively, last weekend. P-days ranged from 627 to 666. In general, tuber development is about 10 days later than normal.
There is no late blight reported so far and the late blight risk is moderate. Seven-day DSV's ranged from 4 to 8, 5 to 10 and 4 to 8 in the southern, central and western areas, respectively. Regular irrigation and scattered rains are forecast in the coming few days. Field scouting and a seven-day schedule of fungicide application are still recommended at present.
Early blight leaf spots have now started showing up in top of the plant canopy. Some fields planted with Ranger were already sprayed two to three times for early blight. With three to four weeks left for most crops, the severity of early blight is not going to be a concern in most fields.
Seed potato fields are already being desiccated in some areas, beginning in the 2nd week of August. Such fields would escape the late season surge in aphids, which may happen some times.
PVY infected plants in process fields continues to be low, but aphids can be seen in the crop canopy. The number of aphids jumped recently in some areas, which will be updated in the next insect report.