Unlock and Play – disease edition

All the way through this trial we’ve talked about the stresses that are generally forgotten about:

  • Golfer traffic
  • Machine wear
  • UV light
  • Temperature

August has a habit of delivering some awkward disease weather, longer dews, humidity and dropping temperatures. Add in a renovation period and disease can sneak up on you quite quickly.

So once we move into a bit of disease weather (which is a pressure that regularly occurs in Yorkshire.) it’s nice to see what our stress management programme can deliver.

Whilst looking at this data there are a few points to bear in mind:

  • The Standard management programme is a very good programme – in no way are we trying to fool anyone here – this is a genuine trial to see the added value of the Biostimulant and Pigment.
  • Check out the Y axis (the one on the left) the amount of disease here (highest is 3.0%) is very low so were not talking frightening levels of disease here. The disease pressure is there but LOW but it’s still early.
  • There are some statistical differences here but nothing to shout about.

The stress management programme is NOT controlling disease.

This is a really important point – there are no grey areas here, these kind of programmes do not control disease. If they did they would need a full Plant Protection Product registration. Please do not let anyone tell you otherwise.

What these products are doing is reducing the impact of abiotic stresses such as:

  • UV Light
  • Additional Wear
  • Temperature

Meaning that as the plant comes out of these periods and enters disease stress periods it is in a stronger position to resist infection.

Those of you who’ve seen me talk about disease management understand how important I believe it is to get control of this early. Whilst that disease pressure has dropped off now, be under no doubt it will be back and everything we can do to reduce the impact of those abiotic stresses will help.

The future of disease management

I believe, these kind of stress management programmes will, in the future form the foundation for peoples disease management strategies.

Delaying the onset of disease during these periods means we go into the really tough periods in a much stronger position.

In order to meet the ever increasing expectation of the modern golfer whilst reducing stress on the plant we need to understand how these stress management programmes using biostimulants and pigments work. Establishing where to fit them into your programme is becoming increasingly important.

For all of you turf managers out there I hope the disease pressure drops of quickly – but for the sake of this trial I hope it ramps up – I’m fascinated to see where this goes next.

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