2018 Strawberry Season Update #1

Thursday, June 7, 2018

The 2018 strawberry season is underway with bloom well advanced going into June. This blog will act as an update on what has been observed in the field so far, as well as a reminder of thing to keep an eye on in the near future.

Frost Damage:
This has been a particularly bad year for frost, with many fields experiencing at least some damage. As you scout your fields for damage, we wanted to provide you with some reference pictures for what you should be looking for.  Frost damage is primarily characterized by blossoms with with black or brown pistils in the center or browning developing fruit. The damaged blossoms will either have no fruit development or produce misshapen fruit that can resemble tarnish plant bug damage. Frost can also cause leaves to crinkle which can resemble cyclamen mite damage. 

A spectrum of frost damage on different stages of blossom and fruit development.

With the repeated frost events and particularly in cases where water was applied as frost protection, it is important to be diligent with botrytis sprays.  Most June bearing fields are in blossom, which is the most important growth stage to protect berries from botrytis infection.  To ensure that you are getting the best protection possible, it is strongly encouraged that growers use a single-site fungicide (not a Group M Fungicide).  Please be mindful of resistance management and be sure to rotate between products from different fungicide groups.

For a list of products available for botrytis management (and other pests) in strawberries please refer to the Perennia Strawberry and Disease Management Schedule