Application timing can have a significant effect on pesticide effectiveness. This project will use small plot research trials to evaluate differences in fungicide efficacy and crop tolerance. Three foliar application timings (day 12-2pm, night 12-1am, early morning 4-5am) will be assessed using three commercially available fungicides per crop in barley, wheat, canola and peas.
Randomized complete block, split plot design, 4 reps
Main plot: fungicide treatments
Sub plots: application timings (day 12-2pm, night 12-1am, early morning 4-5am)
Lethbridge (Coles) – all crops,
Brooks (Harding) – all crops,
Lacombe (Turkington) – wheat and barley,
SARDA Ag Research – canola and peas
Barley (scald, net blotch): Tilt, Twinline, Quilt
Wheat (tan spot, spot blotch, septoria, stagnospora): Caramba, Prosaro, Bravo
Canola (sclerotinia, black leg): Quadris, Rovral, Vertisan
Peas (Ascochyta, mycosphaerella): Acapela, Priaxor, Lance
Researchers used hand held sprayers equipped with two meter booms, CO2 propellant and low drift nozzles to minimize drift. Fungicide labels informed the spray rates, application timing and other considerations. Nozzles were spaced 50 cm apart and held 50 cm above the canopy. Plot dimensions, number of rows, row spacing etc. were adjusted to accommodate different seeding and spraying equipment.
Our study clearly showed that crops are not likely to respond to fungicide applications under low disease pressures and will most likely maintain yield potential close to the pre-disease level. Therefore, producers could avoid unnecessary fungicides expenses under low disease severity without facing the risk of losing any yields while saving time, financial resources and the environment. These results agree with several other researchers who recommend using fungicides only when damage to crop is critical and significant yield loss potential is eminent. In general, our study results suggest that fungicides applied during the day, night or dawn time would be similarly effective on barley, wheat and canola, with some advantage of dawn or night time applications for peas. However, because of low disease pressure, the study could not maximize the differences between treatments. Further research might verify these results.
Mike Gretzinger used a headlamp to help him see while spraying the night trials.
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