Surviving a Municipal Cosmetic Pesticide Ban: New products

Trichoderma—the greenish fungi growing in circles on the special selective pink agar—recovered from leaves of plants treated in a 2012 field trial. Photo courtesy Deborah Henderson

By Deborah Henderson, PhD

Some new fungicide products are becoming available to help control soil-borne diseases. One registered now in turf is a bacterium (Bacillus subtilis, Rhapsody) for controlling a broad spectrum of bacterial and fungal diseases of turf including Brown Patch, Anthracnose, and Dollar Spot. A second is a fungus (Trichoderma harzianum, Rootshield) that has not yet been registered for turf, but controls soil-borne diseases in ornamentals.

A reality check for all new biological and low-risk pesticides is they do not work like chemical pesticides. This author suggests paying more attention to the label instructions; do not wait until a pest or disease is epidemic, take a proactive approach. As a pest manager, you need to know more about your system as well as these new products. Small-scale ‘trials’ with any new product are a great way to get some experience with them.

Some new low-risk herbicides seem to work well and others are more fussy about how they are used. Get to know them. Even if a product does not work for you in some situations, it may work quite well in others, so it is important not to give up until it has been tried a few times in different conditions. To get the best out of new soft products, they need the best chance for success. These are your new tools and they will perform best when used within IPM strategies where you employ all available tactics to suppress weeds, pests, and diseases.

Read the full article: Surviving a Municipal Cosmetic Pesticide Ban

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