June 17, 2016

Crop conditions:  Harvest of June- bearing strawberries is underway, with pick- your- own open or opening this weekend across most of the province.  Strawberry flavour has improved over the last two weeks as sunshine and warmer weather have returned.

Spotted Wing Drosophila  – SWD update #2 June 17

 Haskaps: Growers who did not install netting have lost most of the crop to birds, at least in southern Ontario. Although haskaps are turning blue, they are far from ripe. Evan Elford has done some excellent work on Haskap maturity and when to harvest for optimum flavour . See “Are your haskaps ready for harvest “.

Day-neutral strawberries:  Growers continue to harvest overwintering Albion, including plugs planted last fall.  New plantings are coming into bloom and starting to produce runners.  Runners should be removed. Most growers prefer to do this while runners are soft and can be removed by hand without pulling too much on the plant.  Check for tarnished plant bug in these fields as bloom returns; the 1st summer generation of plant bug can often spoil the first flush of new bloom.. Two spotted spider mite could be a problem in day neutrals – especially in hot dry conditions. Check middle aged leaves for mites and watch for stippling damage on older leaves.

Anthracnose is starting to show up on day neutral fruit, although not too serious so far.  It is important to include broad-spectrum group M fungicides (captan, Maestro, Thiram, Granuflo -T) in your disease management program for both botrytis and anthracnose. I am VERY interested when this disease first shows up in your fields. Please let me know.

June bearing strawberries:  Harvest is underway. There have been a few reports of leather rot. Fruit infected with leather rot may be soft and off-colour) , beige, or whitish or dull purple, with a bad odour or taste.  The best defense against this disease is a good straw cover.

Anthracnose fruit rot is also showing up in Annapolis . Although the weather has been dry, overhead irrigation can also spread anthracnose.  If you are unsure if anthracnose is causing the marks on your fruit, set some fruit in a plastic bag or small sealed container for a day or two. If the problem is anthracnose you will see orange areas where spores are being produced.

We have been watching all year for cyclamen mite – populations are starting to build up now, but it’s too late for control.  Flag areas where cyclamen mite is causing stunted crinkled plants. This pest tends to go quiet at renovation time but can rebound in late summer or fall, when control could be required again.

Strawberry aphids are now flying to new plantings.  Growers should scout weekly for aphids and apply controls when populations begin to build. 15 aphids on 60 leaves is plenty… don’t let populations build above this.  Aphids should be controlled in both new-non bearing  plantings as well as fruiting fields. Beleaf and Sivanto are two good aphicides with 0 days to harvest but 12-hour re-entry.

Blueberries – This is an important time to control cranberry and cherry fruitworm. A second insecticide 7-14 days after the first is needed if trap captures continue.  Apparently trap captures of fruitworm moths have been unusually high in Michigan.

see also Blueberry Maggot Certification program

Raspberries– Summer bearing raspberries are setting fruit, and although there has been some winter injury in colder regions, many growers are anticipating a large crop. At the green fruit stage, raspberries require consistent soil moisture – at least an inch and up to 2 inches of water per week during the green fruit stage is important.

Follow me on TWITTER for mid-week updates @fisherpam . #berryipm

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