Extended protection against grape diseases - Elders Rural Services
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Extended protection against grape diseases

A powerful, dual mode of action fungicide, offering one-pass control of powdery mildew and botrytis bunch rot is set to be welcomed by grape growers in the new season.

Luna Experience, from Bayer, contains fluopyram (Group 7) and tebuconazole (Group 3) active ingredients. This is a unique combination that presents an excellent rotational tool, extended protection, and can be applied more than once in grower’s fungicide programs to further improve disease control. Fluopyram belongs to a novel Succinate Dehydrogenase Inhibitor (SDHI) chemical class discovered by Bayer, while tebuconazole is a demethylation inhibitor (DMI).

A trial last year investigating the control of powdery mildew using Luna Experience in grapevines at Margaret River in Western Australia, showed excellent results said Bayer market development agronomist Ian McMaster, adding that more trials were being planned to further assist growers.

“Luna Experience is taken up better by the stems than leaves, so it provides good movement into buds and new growth,’’ Mr McMaster said.

“It’s a very good, long lasting compound and it controls both powdery mildew and botrytis, compared with some other newer fungicides that only target powdery mildew.’’

Territory business manager Ian Cook said Luna Experience was systemic, providing the upward movement into leaves and new growth. It also is translaminar, ensuring the underside of leaves also is protected.

“It protects the plant parts by adhering to the leaf surface and slowly penetrating into the leaf over time. It is quite persistent and so offers great length of control,’’ Mr Cook said.

He said Luna Experience was a cost-effective alternative for growers and was compatible with a wide range of products.

In export wine grapes, Luna Experience can be applied from the E-L 11 to E-L 17 growth stage, while for table and domestic wine grapes, it can be applied through to the E-L 29 (4 mm berry size) stage.

Mr McMaster said for export wine grape growers, Luna Experience would provide good powdery mildew control as well as a “safeguard’’ against botrytis bunch rot.

“With its good systemic activity and extended protection, you are providing yourself some cover.’’

“In wine grapes, fungicide applications generally start from four-leaf, so growers could apply Luna Experience early and through to E-L 17, or, if they can only apply it once in their programs, they could apply Prosper fungicide first for good, efficient control and then change to a different chemical group such as Luna Experience and also take advantage of its latent botrytis protection.’’

For table grapes, to take full advantage of its dual disease activity, he said it would be ideal to apply it just prior to flowering or at 10 per cent cap fall, followed by using fungicides like Teldor or Scala, and then to apply Luna Experience again at E-L 29 to continue the program and provide great, extended protection.

“This effectively keeps other botryticides up your sleeve for later, provides protection through to pre-bunch closure and will save on the need for another powdery mildew product in the mix.’’

Mr Cook said the application of Luna Experience in export wine grapes at E-L 17 would be effective, and important, to take advantage of its extended protection.

He said the fungicide’s dual formulation and flexible application window in table and domestic wine grapes would help achieve excellent control of powdery mildew and botrytis in those crops.

“In table grapes over flowering, when botrytis can be a potential issue, Luna Experience will continue to have a good fit, with the bonus of controlling powdery mildew as well in the one pass.’’

“Growers will be able to tick two boxes. Depending upon the conditions, they can target both powdery mildew and botrytis from four-leaf right through to 4 mm berry size.’’

Elders offers a range of Bayer crop protection products.

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Article written by Bayer for Seasons magazine.