Potatoes in Canada

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Manitoba potato disease report: July 15

July 15, 2015, MB – Late blight has been reported in Ontario, but it has not yet been reported in Manitoba, writes Vikram Bisht, with the potato and horticultural crops department at Manitoba Agriculture, Foods and Rural Development, in the latest potato disease report.

The crops in general are doing well, with good soil moisture and temperatures. The rows have closed in most crops and in some cases the crops are settling down. Within crop moisture is currently high.

The late blight risk is getting close to 18, the threshold for high risk, in many sites across the province. Once the total DSV accumulation exceeds 18, the seven day change in DSV is more important. A seven day change of 0-3 is considered low risk, a change of 4-8 is moderate risk, and a change of 9 or more is high risk.

With scattered thunderstorms in the last few days throughout the province, and hail damage (minor to severe) in some areas (Roseisle-Miami area and recently in the Carberry area), it is important to keep up with fungicide protection. Use of systemic (translaminar) fungicides along with a protectant fungicide will be a good strategy to stay ahead of the late blight disease. Cymoxanil containing fungicides are reported to have "kick-back.” More rains are forecast in the coming few days, so it is important to find a window for spraying before rains and consider rain-fast character of the products being considered.

Scouting for late blight in fields and home garden potato and tomato plants is critical now that the weather is going to be wet for quite a few days. Cull piles have been taken care of in many places; with a few exceptions of piles with plants growing still seen near storages. A contact desiccant (e.g. diquat/paraquat) should be used on these plants; glyphosate will not work for fully grown plants.

Early blight disease is almost non-existent in most RB fields. Early varieties and some table stock are showing some spots. One field with boscalid spray is showing some early blight spotting; isolate will be tested for boscalid resistance. Currently, the level of early blight spotting is extremely low in most fields.

July 15, 2015
By Vikram Bisht/MAFRD