Be On Lookout For Bertha Armyworm

The Swan River area is seeing some high levels of armyworm larvae, provincial entomologist John Gavloski says in the Aug. 2 weekly disease and insect update.

Some higher levels were also reported from the Beausejour area, but most were over an inch long and it appeared the population was starting to turn to pupae.

“Some armyworms collected from the Winkler area that I have been rearing are all now pupae, so we should notice the larval populations drop dramatically,” he said.

They can produce a second generation in Manitoba, but this is often too late to do much economic damage. For those scouting cereals in the Swan River Valley, keep an eye on the size of the larvae. When they get over an inch long they will be pupating soon.

The Canola Council of Canada also issued a warning urging Prairie canola growers to be scouting their fields “immediately.”

Hot, dry weather has been “favourable” to the insect’s numbers, the council said.

Late blight arrives in Manitoba

Late blight was confirmed as of Aug. 2 on potato plants in one field in Holland, provincial potato specialist Vikram Bisht says in the weeklyPotato News.

Now that the disease’s arrival is confirmed, it is important for Manitoba growers to keep up with fungicide applications. Growers close to the central region should use premium fungicide products with some systemic activity and tighten the frequency, he said.

It is also important to scout the fields more closely and within the canopy, especially in higher potential risk areas like low-lying and tree-sheltered areas.

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