Thanks to Richard and Roots, Shoots and Fruits for introducing us to Fulzyme Plus. We have a 40-hectare apple orchard in the Waikato and have been using Fulzyme Plus now for 18 months and have seen a significant reduction in the amount of European Canker in the orchard compared to previous seasons.
The Waikato is always wet in the winter/spring months, making control of European Canker difficult if the disease gets well established. Traditionally we have controlled canker by pruning it out by hand, painting all cuts with pruning paint, and copper sprays and tree removal of badly infected trees. The costs of pruning out canker is expensive per year in extra labour, paint and chemicals. Unfortunately, canker is indiscriminate in infecting fruiting wood; invariably, good fruiting wood is infected and must be removed. The resulting loss of production and extra costs for control make the financial implications significant to our overall performance.
Richard suggested a Fulzyme spray programme to assist with plant health. This included the use of Biomin Copper over leaf fall for defoliation and then 3-4 applications of Fulzyme at 1 litre per hectare in 2000 litres of water approx. 1 month apart over dormancy.
During winter 2014, we applied the first application of Fulzyme to a 2-hectare trail within the orchard at 1 litre per hectare. Within a few weeks, we noticed cankers were starting to dry and external lesions beginning to shrink and flake away from the canker sting. Within 1 to 2 months, we noticed collousing around the treated canker sting and a reduction in cankers spreading from the original canker site. From there, we treated the whole orchard at 1 litre per hectare and noticed similar results.
We are well into our 2nd winter of using Fulzyme and have noticed approximately a 90% reduction in the number of canker stings in the orchard from previous seasons.
Production this season is up 27% on the previous year, with an overall 10% increase in pack-out percentages. We also expect production to increase this coming season again as replacement wood regenerates to fill the canopy previously lost to the canker.
We have now integrated Fulzyme into our winter management programme and are very happy with the results.
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