Early season vineyard management

By Terence Bradshaw Grapes are moving fast in Vermont vineyards, with most cultivars in the UVM vineyard at about 3” shoot growth. Shoot thinning now will give best results before the vines waste energy on growth that you won’t keep. We typically aim for 4-6 well-spaced shoots per foot of canopy, selecting for the most […]

Fire blight risk on Friday

By Terence Bradshaw This is just a quick word of warning that the heat, peaking on Friday, will allow for buildup of the fire blight bacteria to infective levels in orchards where the pathogen is present. While most or many apples and especially pears are past petal fall, any that are still in bloom should […]

Apple management week of May 20

By Terence Bradshaw While it’s beautiful out now on Sunday evening, we certainly saw a significant apple scab infection period over the past 24-36 hours in every orchard across the state. If you weren’t protected with good coverage of a full-rate protectant fungicide going into this, then you’d best cover up ASAP. A material with […]

Apple scab and fire blight management

By Terence Bradshaw Apple scab- this one is simple, we likely have an infection period coming on Saturday that will likely release another quarter or so of the season’s entire ascospore load. Every orchard needs to be covered for this event. Overnight tonight through Saturday morning looks like good spray weather. This is a good […]

Early season vineyard management

By Terence Bradshaw Buds have broken in Vermont vineyards and many vines are at 1-3” short growth. This brings up a few pest management considerations for your vineyards. Most cold-climate cultivars will not need disease protection until 5-8” of shoot growth, but any vineyards with heavy disease pressure last year may wish to begin earlier, […]

Apple scab infection period

By Terence Bradshaw Okay, today was wet. Without question this was a substantial apple scab infection period. Fire blight- I’m still on the fence an lean towards ‘not a problem’ unless you had a substantial amount last year and have susceptible cultivars. NEWA estimates across the state suggest that 12-30% of the entire season’s apple […]

Fire blight concerns 5/15/2018

By Terence Bradshaw I’ve had a number of people ask my thoughts on fire blight infection potential with today’s rains. I’ve looked at a couple of models, and generally, they hover around the point of calling or not calling an infection. Let’s look at the conditions required for infection: 1. Bloom. If you’re inland or […]

Apple management: Bloom for most

By Terence Bradshaw There are several key points to consider in managing apple crops this week: the lack of rain, and bloom. The dry weather has reduced scab infection pressure, but has also put developing ascospores into a brief ‘hibernation’ period. Trust that the next significant wetting period will release a large proportion of the […]

Thoughts on pest management at pink bud stage in Vermont orchards

By Terence Bradshaw Many Vermont orchards hit the pink bud stage yesterday, which is an important time for crop management. The main concerns should be: apple scab, fire blight, and early season tree nutrition. For apple scab, NEWA is predicting an infection period tonight and into Saturday, so orchards should be covered with a protectant […]

Apple crop management this week

By Terence Bradshaw Apple buds are rapidly expanding into tight cluster bud stage in most of Vermont, which sets the calendar close to ‘normal’ after the cool, slow start to the season. Apple scab infection periods have been somewhat scarce, depending on when you started you clock for ascospore maturity (green tip, minus any confidence […]