Wednesday, August 8, 2012

IFTA 2012 Quebec - Day 1

Bonjour from Quebec, Canada. Well, a little apres the fact, so hello. But, I was on the IFTA Study Tour to the Province of Quebec, Canada on July 26-27, 2012. App. 180 of us (three busloads!) were treated to good French-Canadian hospitality, including lots of cider (yes, the alcoholic kind, vs. fresh or sweet cider), a classic maple sugar house supper, and much aménité. Beginning with this post, I will bring you image and brief commentaire from each visite with the Quebec producteur/verger (orchard). First stop, the IRDA Research Orchard in Saint-Bruno, just east of Montreal (skyline above left). I was anxious to see the overhead spray system developed by my colleague Vincent Philion (below left), who I know quite well from an annual pest management meeting in Vermont each fall. Philion explained the organic pest control strategy being deployed through the system, which included phopshite (or was it bicarbonate?) and sulfur (for scab control) and Surround (kaolin clay) for insect control. But he noted the inclusion of Surround resulted in poor scab control (below right), likely a by-product of interaction with the fungicides. Hmm...

1 comment:

Venturia said...

Hello Jon! Paul-Emile Yelle told me I was on your blog!

Potassium bicarbonate + sulfur is a great apple scab fungicide for organic growers.

Applied with the right timing, it has good post infection activity. It's used on thousands of acres in Europe.

In our plot, it had great efficacy where kaolin was not mixed in, thus the hypothesis that there was some sort of interaction. Leslie Huffman from OMAFRA says these interactions are expected with kaolin.

So it's back to the drawing board! Still looking for a combination organic insecticide/fungicide. Any ideas? ;-)