In today’s Almond Matters, brought to you by Valent, establishing an early spray strategy is going to require a substantial amount of monitoring. The relatively light winter California experienced has increased the survival rate of many orchard pests.
“This time of year, the Springtime of year, the name of the game is monitoring,” Valent Field Market Research Representative Tino Lopez said, “you have to be monitoring, monitoring, monitoring, sometimes a couple times a week in the same orchard.”
Creating an early spray strategy will depend on the particular issues in a particular orchard, which will rely on effective monitoring. “We’re looking for insects, we’re looking for disease, we’re looking for mites, we’re looking for weeds, so it’s a time of year that you are really trying to establish any early patterns that you see,” said Lopez. “The history of that orchard, the weather that we had here in winter and the monitoring all add up to a picture that allows pest control advisors and growers to start developing a strategy for controlling these pests.”
Getting in front of various types of pest and disease pressures will benefit growers in the long run as the season progresses. “The first spray that we typically will do, so-called ‘May Sprays’, are mostly targeted for…peach twig borer, and oriental fruit moth, but along with that you may also be suppressing some of the navel orangeworm,” Lopez noted. “It’s important that we take care of that fruit because we have a long growing season left behind it.”
Lopez recommends using softer materials that are not too harsh on beneficial insects during early spray applications. For control of tougher pests such as navel orangeworm, softer products are also recommended, but with a focus on reducing mite flare-ups. “We have a product, Danitol, which is an excellent product for the control of navel orangeworm and it does not flare mites,” said Lopez.
Listen to Lopez’s interview below.