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Development of Action Threshold to Manage Common Leaf Spot and Black Seed Disease of Strawberry Caused by Mycosphaerella fragariae
- Carisse, Odile, McNealis, Vanessa
- Plant disease 2019 v.103 no.3 pp. 563-570
- Mycosphaerella fragariae, fungi, fungicides, leaf spot, leaves, market value, models, overwintering, pesticide application, regression analysis, seeds, strawberries, vigor
- The fungus Mycosphaerella fragariae is responsible for two strawberry diseases: common leaf spot (CLS) and black seed disease (BSD). In June-bearing strawberry plantings, CLS influences vigor, yield, and winter survival. During production years, BSD causes black lesions around strawberry seeds, reducing the market value of the berries. The objective of this study was to characterize the relationships between CLS and BSD and to develop action thresholds for the management of BSD. Data on the number of lesions per leaf, number of black seeds per berry, and percentage of diseased berries were collected at two experimental and six commercial sites from 2000 to 2011, corresponding to 50 farm-years. First, logistic regression was used to model the relationship between BSD occurrence in its binary data form and the number of lesions per leaf assessed at 7, 14, 21, and 28 days before 10% bloom. Second, linear regression was used to model the relationship between BSD severity, BSD incidence, and number of lesions per leaf assessed at 7, 14, 21, and 28 days before 10% bloom. Resulting action thresholds of 15, 25, or 33 lesions per leaf at 21, 14, or 7 days before 10% bloom, respectively, were compared with the recommended practice at three commercial sites in 2014, 2015, and 2016. The percentage of diseased berries was significantly (P = 0.0016; least significant difference = 7.140) higher in the sections of the fields that were not managed for BSD, with an average of 15.22% diseased berries, in comparison with 3.22 and 2.44% diseased berries in sections managed according to the recommendations and the thresholds, respectively. Overall, 40% less fungicide was used when the thresholds were applied. Hence, these thresholds can be used as an additional decision tool to optimize fungicide applications during the prebloom period.