Monday, June 19, 2017

Spraying for scab

Spraying pecans (view from the tractor seat)
   With over 3 inches of rain falling over the weekend, it is high time we quit waiting on pecan nut casebearer and start concentrating on controlling pecan scab.  Today we fired up the sprayer and applied some Quilt Xcel fungicide. We sprayed the grove with our air-blast sprayer that applies roughly 100 gallons of water per acre of trees.  That makes figuring out how much chemical to put in the tank pretty easy.
    Read any chemical label and you'll find the rates of application given in amount of product per acre. Our sprayer has a 500 gallon tank or enough water to cover 5 acres. To determine the amount of product to be added to the spray tank, I just simply multiply the per acre rate by 5.  The recommended application rate is for Quilt is 14 oz. per acre. In filling our sprayer, I added 70 oz of Quilt to the spray tank.
   One word of advice abound spraying fungicides. Good disease is only achievable when the fungicide covers all plant surfaces. To get good spray coverage I always spray each tree from both sides. You should not assume that your air-blast sprayer is powerful enough to penetrate the entire canopy from just one side of the tree. 
   We did include a insecticide in with our fungicide spray. We added Govern insecticide to the tank to control this summer's first hatch of fall webworm (photo at left). In scouting the orchard, we have found several colonies of first instar larvae. At this point in the webworm's live cycle they have done a minor amount of defoliation or have yet to hatch. Spraying an insecticide now should keep this insect out of our orchard until the second generation arrives in mid-August.