Good Fruit Grower

January 2015

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Page 12 of 39 GOOD FRUIT GROWER JANUARY 1, 2015 13 Introducing Madex HP for control of codling moth and oriental fruit moth larvae. Now you have a selection of highly eff ective granuloviruses. So potent they can be used at ultra-low rates for cost-eff ective control. Ideal for managing insecticide resistance and residues. Four-hour reentry interval (REI) and zero plant harvest interval (PHI). OMRI ® Listed and NOP Approved. Double Trouble for Codling and Oriental Fruit Moths. CYD-X ® HP and ma - dex ® hp The most potent codling moth and oriental fruit moth viruses...ever. © 2014 Certis USA £nääÓxäxäÓ{ÊUÊ ] [ when I won't get a return on that piece of land for seven years," he said. "But," he added, "the labor problem is breathing down our necks terribly, and I think that will be one of the things that will change how we do things." Another motivation for change is pest control, because managing pests is more difficult in big, old trees. Schmitten said pest control last sea- son was the worst he's seen in almost 30 years. Efficacy of the pesticides used is declining because of resistance and new products target specific pests, unlike the old broad-spectrum organophosphates. "So, you may control pear psylla, but stinkbug might pop up and you might control stinkbug, and mealybug pops up," he said. "It's a very complicated pest dynamic out there." Meanwhile, the cost of controlling pear pests has increased. Schmitten spends about $1,200 per acre on pest control now, up from a mere $200 an acre when he began farming. The new products are safer for people and the environment, he said, but they make it harder to control the insects. Schmitten plans to install an overhead irrigation system, as well as drip, in all his future plantings so that he can wash the honeydew off the pear psylla and make them more vulnerable to pesticides. Varieties He does not see new pear varieties as a research priority, although he thinks Gem, which was recently developed by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, is a great pear. He's concerned about the ability to secure shelf space at the retail store for a new variety and says a packing company would have to build a promotion and marketing program before he'd feel comfortable planting it. 'I know I can sell d'Anjous and I know I can sell Bartletts for a profit," he said. Schmitten believes there's work yet to be done to ensure that d'Anjou and Bartlett pears are both edible and attractive when they reach the consumer. Ripened pears can easily be bruised and damaged, so it might take new types of packaging to pro- tect the fruit. He and his wife have done in-store sam- pling with the Pear Bureau several times in stores in Florida and Colorado and learned the importance of good eating quality. "That's really rewarding," he said. "That's where you really learn that when people get a ripe pear there's nothing that beats it. It's a delicacy. I feel our pears are an heirloom product." •

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