Dry weather slows infection rate

NZ: Big drop in PSA cases

Since December there has been a marked decrease in the number of PSA outbreaks in New Zealand kiwifruit, relative to the same period last year.

In December 2011 and January 2012, 31 cases were recorded in the Bay of Plenty. This year, however, according to Barry O' Neil CEO of Kiwifruit Vine Health, there have been just 3 new cases.

The decrease is thought to be related to the hot, dry Summer as moisture increases the bacteria's ability to spread and reproduce.

He says it is still good practice to apply copper at the Summer rate and to continue to remove vigorous late growth - which seemed particularly vulnerable to infection last year.

He also says if growers are girdling, or ring barking to restrict the flow around the vine of leaf produced sugars, they should only cut dry matter to ensure it is not too deep and copper sprays are used to protect the wound until it heals.

Source: radionz.co.nz

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