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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Research Project: Alternatives to MEBR for California Cropping Systems

Location: Water Management Research

Title: A clean start to productive orchards and vineyards: recent research on methyl bromide alternatives for perennial crop nurseries

Authors
item Hanson, Bradley -
item Gao, Suduan
item Gerik, James
item Qin, Ruijun -
item Cabrera, Alfonso -
item Jhala, Amit -
item Abit, Joy -
item Wang, Dong
item Browne, Greg

Submitted to: California Agriculture
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: May 10, 2013
Publication Date: October 2, 2013
Citation: Hanson, B.D., Gao, S., Gerik, J.S., Qin, R., Cabrera, A.J., Jhala, A., Abit, J., Wang, D., Browne, G.T. 2013. A clean start to productive orchards and vineyards: recent research on methyl bromide alternatives for perennial crop nurseries. California Agriculture. 67(3):181-189.

Interpretive Summary: Alternatives to methyl bromide soil fumigation were studied in several experiments conducted in open field perennial crop nurseries in California. Different methods of surface sealing were conducted to reduce emissions of 1,3-dichloropropene. Although it controls a more narrow range of soilborne pests, 1,3-D can be used to meet nematode certification requirements in coarse-textured soils. Nurseries with fine-textured soil types cannot use 1,3-D because the maximum use rate allowed in California is insufficient to provide dependable nematode control. These growers currently do not have a viable alternative to MB and are facing a very difficult situation. Increasing the maximum use rate of 1,3-D in fine textured soils or advances in application and surface sealing technology could overcome these issues to some degree but additional research and regulatory changes at the state level will be needed before they can be considered.

Technical Abstract: Methyl bromide (MB) is an important pest management tool in open field perennial crop nurseries in California for control of many soil borne pests including plant parasitic nematodes, pathogens, and weeds. Because MB is being phased out under the provisions of the Montreal Protocol, alternatives are needed to ensure the productivity of the perennial crop nursery industry as well as ornamental, orchard, and vineyard production systems that depend on clean planting stock from California nurseries. As part of the USDA Area-wide Pest Management Project for Integrated Methyl Bromide Alternatives, several perennial crop nursery projects were conducted from 2007-2011 to maximize performance and minimize environmental issues limiting adoption of registered alternative fumigants. In this paper, we discuss the results of research conducted to evaluate the interactive effects of surface sealing and application shanks on pest control efficacy and 1,3-dicloropropene emissions.

Last Modified: 9/23/2014