The CropWatch issued last week was largely to alert members to be diligent and to look thoroughly and carefully in canopies for powdery mildew. If it’s the only thing you do in the next day or two, do it NOW. Reports of powdery in canopies in all sub-regions are more prevalent this year but it’s not too late to remedy the situation.
We are near the time when berries are becoming resistant to disease. This does not mean they magically throw off any disease that is already present; it means the berries are resistant to new disease infection from germinating spores.
Your best defences against most diseases are UV light and airflow so maintaining canopies with dappled light will be easier to control disease than canopies that are dense and layered.
Continue on with your protective spray program, paying particular attention to Powdery Mildew, but also be mindful of rapidly closing withholding period windows. Check with your winery about withholding periods
As we move into warmer weather (heat wave season), irrigation becomes more critical. Check your irrigation system regularly and make sure any issues are dealt with. This involves checking pressures, fixing leaks, flushing, and possible chlorine treatment if algae become an issue. The more uniform the application, the better the result achieved from the water applied.