Berries Uncategorized

Berry Bulletin May 31

In this bulletin:

  • Crop & pest update
  • Spotted wing drosophila monitoring
  • Funding Opportunities

Strawberries: Unexpectedly, there were a couple of frost events and even snow last week in some areas.  Day-neutral harvest began last week on overwintered fields, and the first June-bearing strawberries where row-covers were used are starting to be picked this week. Where row covers were not used early and mid-season varieties are at the bloom-green fruit stage.  

Many growers received some much-needed rain on Friday. However, irrigation may still be needed: check out Rebecca Shortt’s post on Using ET Data to Make Irrigation Decisions. Make sure to irrigate your new plantings- they are at risk of poor establishment unless irrigated.  

In new day-neutral plantings remove flower buds and bloom until there are 4-6 leaves present.

Cyclamen mite: Active mites can be found in June-bearing and day-neutral fields. Pay close attention to older fields or fields with a history of damage. Agri-mek and Vegol Crop Oil can be applied to control these mites. Agri-mek works best on cyclamen mite when plants are succulent and actively growing, and Agri-mek should be used with a surfactant for best control. Agri-mek should not be applied during bloom.

Clipper weevils: with the warm nights last week we are seeing a lot of clipped buds and clipper weevils this season- check for clipped buds around the perimeter of your field. Expect to see more damage in older fields, but check new fields as well. Damage can occur until all flower buds are open. If clipper weevil damage is evident and control is necessary group 3s (Up-cyde, Matador) or Cormoran can be used. Group 3s can be hard on beneficials and may cause mite outbreaks, so only spray if needed- you may be able to limit your spray to the field edge.

Tarnished plant bugs (TPB): continue monitoring for TPB in day-neutral and June-bearing fields.  Group 3s, Rimon, and Beleaf can be used for TPB during bloom. Beleaf at the high rate will suppress TPB and control aphids.

Gypsy moth: Keep an eye on new plantings for gypsy moth larvae- they can be found on many berry farms.  Bt products (Dipel, Bioprotec) applied for leafrollers will also have some activity on gypsy moth larvae.

Disease: Bloom is an important time for disease management.

Anthracnose: For June-bearing strawberries rotate between Switch and a group M for anthracnose control during bloom. Spraying after bloom for anthracnose is only needed if there are warm & wet conditions. Do not rely on group 11s alone.  For day-neutral growers use a group M when possible- there is a 6-day REI for captan and maestro. During harvest rotate between Switch (group 12+9), Diplomat (19) and Quadris Top (11+3). Miravis Prime (7+12) is a new product registered for botrytis control on strawberries, and also has some efficacy on anthracnose. Do not make more than three applications of fludioxonil-containing products (eg Switch, Miravis Prime, Scholar) on strawberries per year. For more information on anthracnose management see the attached suggestions:

Powdery mildew can be found in day-neutral fields. Check out pub 360 B page 142 for a list of registered products.

Blueberries: are at bloom- petal fall. Bloom is a good time to apply fungicides for anthracnose and botrytis. Use fungicides that control both these diseases. This is also a good time to control Phomopsis.

Cranberry fruitworm and cherry fruitworm: begin to fly at bloom- plan to spray for them at petal fall. You will need 1-2 well timed insecticides for cranberry fruitworm and cherry fruitworm control.  

Gypsy moth: Gypsy moth larvae can be found on many blueberry farms. Keep an eye on fields surrounded by woods and especially young plantings that can tolerate less damage. Bt products (Dipel, Bioprotec) applied for cranberry and cherry fruitworm will also have some activity on gypsy moth larvae. Check out this article from last year for more information on gypsy moths.


Raspberries are starting to bloom.   Make sure raspberries are getting adequate irrigation as well.  Flower buds are susceptible to raspberry fruitworm and strawberry clipper weevil. If there are no signs of beetles or leaf shredding an insecticide isn’t needed until after bloom. Do not apply an insecticide during bloom.

Spotted Wing Drosophila:

We have set up traps and started monitoring for SWD at a few sites this year. Thanks to the consultants and growers who are helping with the monitoring.  No SWD have been captured so far.  

Funding Opportunities:

The Agri-tech Innovation Program will support the modernization of workplaces by funding projects to implement advanced or innovative technology (such as automation and robotics), that will enhance the protection of workers health and safety against COVID-19, leaf to business efficiencies and productivity, and help build the sector’s resilience.  Click here for more information.

Follow our ONfruit blog for regular updates and berry information.

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