FIELD EVALUATION OF BROAD-SPECTRUM, NON-FUMIGANT PEST CONTROL FOR VEGETABLE AND STRAWBERRY PRODUCTION IN FLORIDA
Location: Subtropical Plant Pathology Research
Project Number: 6618-22000-040-09
Start Date: Mar 24, 2011
End Date: Jun 30, 2013
To establish the effective rates of a novel, chemical, non-fumigant methyl bromide alternative, establish crop sensitivity to the material, determine optimal application method, and potential worker safety requirements.
Research sites in Florida will be established at two locations that have adequate pest pressure to evaluate the spectrum of activity of the experimental material applied under a typical production system for each selected crop. The first two studies to be implemented will be in the raised-bed vegetable and strawberry production system. The strawberry trial will include seven treatments: Untreated Check, four rates of the experimental material, MeBr (as the standard), and the best non-chemical standard developed in a recently completed project. In the vegetable trial, to be conducted at the USDA, ARS Research Farm in Fort Pierce, FL, the experiment will be conducted as split plot design with all treatments consisting of 100’ of treated bed with the split consisting of application method. Treatments will be replicated four times and main plots will be arranged as a randomized complete block design. The MeBr application for the vegetable trial will be shank applied at bed formation. All treatments will be covered with Canslit brand metalized film to assist with whitefly control. In the strawberry trial, to be conducted at the strawberry research farm in Dover, FL experimental treatments will be applied in paired plots with the MeBr treatment. In the second year of the project, both of the previous trials will be repeated. Also in the second year of the project, extension personnel and growers will be invited to field day presentations to share the current progress.
Nematode, weed, and fungal populations at each field site and for each year will be assessed prior to treatment, immediately following treatment prior to crop establishment, at mid-season of the crop, and at the initiation of harvest.