Potato growers moving to Nemathorin for the firsttime this season need to make some simple, but important, changes to theirequipment set-up to assure accurate application, advises Syngenta FieldTechnical Manager, Stephen Williams.
He pointed out the first step is to change to theproduct-specific metering cartridge or rotors. Most growers have moved to theone-piece Apcal cartridge system, he noted, with the dedicated NEMATHORINcartridge identified by the light blue insert.
Guidelines for accurate Nemathorin application
Operators will then need to calibrate theirapplicator to the required application rate, advised Mr Williams; Nemathorin isapplied at 30kg/ha for PCN and reduction of spraing or 15 kg/ha for wireworm.Even where your machine has been correctly set up and tested to assure it isspreading evenly across the machine, it will still need to be calibrated forthe precise application rate for the product, he added.
Operators will note that the application rate forNemathorin is significantly lower – up to 50% less than oxamyl, for example.Once the machine has been set-up and calibrated, it is important toconsistently check and record the amount of product used tallies with the areatreated. New industry guidelines highlight growers should also keep a recordto demonstrate a daily check of applicators and weekly calibration of theequipment.
As with all nematicides the optimum results areachieved with even spread and thorough incorporation into the target zone ofthe potato seedbed. For Nemathorin we are looking to mix the granules into thetop 15 to 20cm of the finished seedbed, he highlighted. If the granules areall too shallow then roots could grow into an unprotected area and be damagedby pests; mixing too deep will dilute the effects and may reduce overallefficacy.
To help growers and operators check the depth of soilmixing, Mr Williams advised they should use an incorporation test instigated bySyngenta. That involved sprinkling a kilo of rice onto the soil surface priorto the normal incorporation pass. The movement of rice has been shown toclosely replicate the distribution of Nemathorin granules in the soil so,digging through the bed profile after incorporation, would pinpoint where thenematicide is present.
The test will highlight any adjustment in operatingdepth or incorporation technique required, and can be easily replicated withany changes in field conditions or technique to check on the incorporationaccuracy.
Full details and a videoof how to undertake the NEMATHORIN Incorporation Test, along with otherpractical advice on applicator set-up and calibration, is available on thededicated SyngentaPotato website pages (www.syngenta.co.uk/potatoes).It includes a BASIS and NRoSO registered Stewardship Guide and Test.
Accuracy of application and incorporation isessential for the good stewardship of all nematicide use, he highlighted. Itwill also deliver the best possible results to protect the growing crop fromdamage and the sustainable management of soil pests within an economicallyviable potato crop rotation.