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Elements of IPM for Potatoes in NY State

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Insects Diseases Weeds
Colorado potato beetle bacterial soft rot & black leg annual grasses
aphids Fusarium dry rot annual broadleaves
green peach late blight perennial grasses
potato early blight perennial broadleaves
melon Verticillium wilt nutsedge
buckthorn Fusarium wilt  
foxglove black dot root rot  
potato leafhopper Rhizoctonia canker and black scurf  
flea beetle Botrytis vine rot  
variegated cutworm white mold  
subterranean and surface cutworms golden &lesion nematodes  
European corn borer pink rot  
wireworms powdery scab  
symphylan Pythium leak  
spider mites Seed piece decay  
  Helminthosporium silver scurf  
  common scab  
  viruses, assorted  
A. Pre-planting decisions Priority Points
1) Crop rotation to control (or improve control of) early blight (2 years), verticillium wilt (3 years or longer), black dot (3 years or longer), canker and black scurf (3 years), white mold (3 years or longer), golden nematode, potato scab, silver scurf, Colorado potato beetle (1 year), European corn borer, wireworms (3-4 years). For some pests, longer distance between fields in the rotation increases effectiveness. High 10
2) Use winter cover crop planted to improve soil, suppress weeds, and reduce compaction. Medium 5
3) Credit nitrogen from previous crop or manure in fertility decision. Medium 5
4) Minimum tillage in the spring to act as a reservoir for beneficial insects and to control soil erosion (muck limitations?) Low 3
5) Destroy all waste potatoes/seed slivers High 10
6) Use only certified seed potatoes High 10
7) Select varieties resistant or tolerant to golden nematode, scab, late blight, early blight, black dot, Colorado potato beetle, potato leafhopper. High 10
8) Properly calibrate seed piece cutter. Proper seedpiece handling. High 10
9) To avoid bruising and soft rots, consider soil type (muck vs stoney) when choosing varieties. Low 3
B. Planting Decisions    
1) Inspect seed on farm before planting by cutting and examining a representative sample for disease symptoms. High 10
2) Adjust seed unloaders and planters to avoid bruising Medium 5
3) Sanitize all seed/planting equipment between seed lots High 10
4) Apply appropriate seed treatment fungicide and in-furrow treatments. Choose fungicide appropriate to soil type and disease history. High 10
5) Warm seed before planting to variety/region specific temperatures as recommended High 10
6) Plant at minimum soil temperature of 50 F and proper soil moisture. Medium 5
7) Suberize seed properly Medium 5
8) Adjust planting depth for soil type, drainage, temperature and variety Medium 5
C. Soil and water Management    
1) Use proper drainage, tiling, and leveling. High 10
2) Soil test for fertility/nutrient/pH levels at least once every 3 years for each field High 10
3) Fertilize according to the soil test for N, P, and K and other nutrients and pH to amounts recommended by Cornell High 10
4) Select irrigation systems by soil type, water availability and other factors Medium 5
5) Use local information available from the Northeast Weather Association or other source for irrigation scheduling. Medium 5
6) Maintain surface residue for erosion control. Medium 5
D. Pest Monitoring and Forecasting    
1) Eliminate potato cull piles. Remove all volunteer potatoes from fields. High 10
2) Scout at least once per week for insects and foliar diseases. (Colorado potato beetle, aphids, potato leafhopper, spider mites, flea beetle, European corn borer, late blight, early blight, viruses, white mold, Botrytis vine rot) High 10
3) Scout once per season for wireworms (preplant) especially in high risk areas Medium 5
4) Follow available Cornell thresholds for diseases and insects (CPB, aphids, PLH, spider mites, flea beetle, ECB) High 10
5) Use trap crops, trenches (CPB), border mulches (CPB), natural enemy releases (CPB, aphids, PLH, ECB) or natural enemy refuges (CPB, aphids, PLH, ECB) to provide additional insect control. Low 3
6) Use an on farm disease forecasting instrument or join a disease forecasting network (e.g. NEWA) to predict conditions appropriate for late blight and early blight. High 10
7) Apply fungicides according to disease forecasts and forecasted weather. High 10
8) Rogue virus infected plants from fields (especially for seed potato growers) High 10
9) Spot kill late blight infected areas of fields with herbicides. High 10
10) Band fungicides when crop is small. Low 3
11) Modify fungicide choice according to late blight genotype that is present. High 10
12) Modify fungicide applications with late blight status in NY on tomatoes, petunias and nightshade (information available from CCE) High 10
13) Make a weed map/list 2 times annually Medium 5
14) Choose herbicide/tillage strategy according to weed species and populations. Medium 5
15) Manage problem weeds with rotational crops. Medium 5
16) Experiment with banding of herbicides in combination with cultivation and hilling operations. Low 3
17) Rotate fungicide, insecticide and herbicide modes of action to avoid or delay field resistance. High 10
18) Chose effective labeled pesticides with the least environmental and beneficial organism impact (EIQ). High 10
19) Calibrate sprayer at least once per season. High 10
20) Keep complete records of soil tests, fertilizer applications, cultural practices, weed maps, scouting results, and pesticide applications. High 10
21) Clean all equipment when moving between fields to prevent weed and disease spread Medium 5
22) Use legal and appropriate techniques for sprayer cleanup, flushout, and container disposal High 10
23) Adjust sprayer boom height as crop grows High 10
24) All growers and employees receive Worker Protection Standard Training. Appropriate posting of fields is completed. High 10
E. Harvest    
1) Minimize harvesting on hot days (>78F) or too cold days (<45F) for potatoes going into storage. Medium 5
2) Minimize harvesting operations when soil is too wet or too dry. Medium 5
3) Adjust equipment to minimize bruising. Have drops no more than 6 inches. Keep chains full. Conduct bruise evaluation (e.g."superspud" or dyes) on equipment once per year — particularly when changes are made High 10
4) Sanitize storage area and/or pallet boxes. High 10
5) Avoid harvesting from wet spots in the field OR keep potatoes harvested form wet spots separated in storage. Low 3
F. Post Harvest/Storage    
1) Maintain proper storage conditions (>90% RH) and allow adequate curing period to promote wound healing. Ensure adequate ventilation for the storage High 10
2) Monitor and manage moisture and temperature to prevent condensation on the top of the pile that would lead to storage diseases High 10
3) Use sugar testing to determine a temperature management plan. Low 3
4) Use refrigeration to take field heat out especially for early season harvest Low 3
5) Control sprouting with appropriate inhibitors or temperature High 10
6) Note disease problems from any fields or as bins are loaded. Keep lots with any signs of disease separated from healthy lots. High 10

revision date: 2003

Total points available = 454

80% of points = 363


Specific information about the use of these IPM elements can be found in the following publications:

Integrated Crop and Pest Management Guidelines for Commercial Vegetable Production.

A Method to Measure the Environmental Impact of Pesticides. 1992. New York Food and Life Sciences Bulletin Number 139.

The above reference material can be obtained from county Cornell Cooperative Extension offices, or Contact the Frank A. Lee Library to view these publications.