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Spatial variation in response to 'reduced input' spray programs for powdery mildew and botrytis identified through whole-of-block experimentation


Bramley, RGV and Evans, KJ and Dunne, KJ and Gobbett, DL, Spatial variation in response to 'reduced input' spray programs for powdery mildew and botrytis identified through whole-of-block experimentation, Australian Journal of Grape and Wine Research, 17, (3) pp. 341-350. ISSN 1322-7130 (2011) [Refereed Article]

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Copyright Statement

Copyright 2011 CSIRO Australia

DOI: doi:10.1111/j.1755-0238.2011.00153.x


Background and Aims: Previous work has highlighted the utility of the whole-of-block approach to viticultural experimentation. Here, we use this approach as a means of evaluating alternative spray programs for managing two economically important grapevine diseases at commercial scale.

Methods and Results: Two experiments were conducted in vineyards in the Coal River and Rokeby districts of Tasmania. The first, carried out in a 4.5 ha vineyard planted to Vitis vinifera L. cv. Pinot Noir, sought to evaluate fungicide programs for control of powdery mildew (Erysiphe necator), in particular with a view to reducing the amount of sulphur applied in organic production systems. The second sought to evaluate the benefit (if any) of changing the time of fungicide application from flowering to pre-bunch closure for the control of botrytis bunch rot (Botrytis cinerea) in a 2.4 ha Chardonnay vineyard. In both cases, treatments were applied to a whole-of-block experimental design using commercial spray equipment. Disease severity and the response to the various spray treatments, was spatially variable and related to topographic variation. Botrytis severity was also related to vine vigour. The powdery mildew results supported the retention of sulphur in organic spray programs, while Switch® (Syngenta Group, Basel, Switzerland) applied at pre-bunch closure in the botrytis experiment reduced disease severity relative to the application at flowering. Spatial variation in the response to the latter treatment, when examined four times pre-harvest, suggested that secondary spread may not have been an important mechanism for increasing disease severity over time.

Conclusions: Consistent with the other work described in this series of papers, we conclude that the whole-of-block experimental approach offers both researchers and vineyard managers a means of acquiring more useful information than would be obtained from a conventional plot-based approach.

Significance of the Study: This study highlights the value of collecting spatially distributed data as a means of better understanding the incidence, spread, progression and control of fungal grapevine diseases. As such, it provides a new application for this experimental approach, which enables spatial variability to be used as an experimental tool.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:geostatistics, on-farm trial, Precision Viticulture, spatial variation, Vitis vinifera
Research Division:Biological Sciences
Research Group:Plant biology
Research Field:Plant pathology
Objective Division:Plant Production and Plant Primary Products
Objective Group:Industrial crops
Objective Field:Wine grapes
UTAS Author:Evans, KJ (Professor Katherine Evans)
UTAS Author:Dunne, KJ (Miss Katie Dunne)
ID Code:66135
Year Published:2011
Web of Science® Times Cited:14
Deposited By:Agricultural Science
Deposited On:2010-12-23
Last Modified:2017-10-13
Downloads:1 View Download Statistics

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