Ahead For Disease Management
The goal of a disease management program is prevention, and decisions
concerning control measures should be made before planting or as early
as possible. Waiting until the disease is readily noticeable invites an
epidemic and complete crop disaster.
In evaluating a disease management program, consider the following:
- Crop Rotation. Long rotations reduce soil-borne diseases
and leaf spot. A rotation away from peanuts for at least three years
is good, four years is even better.
- Correct Identification. Learn to identify and distinguish
one disease from another. Know what diseases pose a threat and the conditions
in which that disease will likely appear.
- Field Mapping. Keep a record of disease problems
on field maps to help target treatments.
- Resistant Varieties. Plant varieties resistant to
a field’s disease potential.
- Timing Of Fungicide Sprays. Use a calendar schedule
or weather advisory to determine timing of the first spray and subsequent
treatments. Protecting your crop before infection occurs is crucial.
- Calibration and Coverage. Proper calibration and
good canopy coverage are keys to a successful spray program. Improper
calibration either wastes product by applying more than is needed or
not enough to do the job. Poor coverage of fungicides is wasted money
as the crop is not adequately protected. Use a lower pressure to make
sure fungicides cover the canopy. A single, flat-fan nozzle directly
over the row works well.
An effective disease management program is vital to growing a high yielding,