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Strawberry B. cinerea IPM optimisation by iMETOS®sm forecasting model

Neringa Rasiukeviciute: Lithuanian Research Centre for Agriculture and Forestry Institute of Horticulture

<div><em>Botrytis cinerea</em> has capability to remain quiescent in unripe strawberry. Grey mould is responsible for a 50 % reduction in annual yields. Meteorological conditions play an important role for the grey mould and strawberry post-harvest shelf-life. In IPM forecasting models can help to evaluate the conditions for the disease development and assist with management decisions. The forecasting models provide producers, consultants and researchers with a tool to evaluate disease management and obtain control recommendations. The aim of this study was to evaluate the iMETOS®sm forecasting model for strawberry grey mould management and postharvest control. The research was carried out at the LAMMC Institute of Horticulture, Lithuania. There were open field experiments in 2008-2009 and 2013-2014 on a cultivar ‘Elkat’, planted at a spacing of 0.8 x 0.3 m. on two rows white film-mulch. The treatments were replicated four times at randomized complete block, each replicate consisted ~3.2 m<sup>2</sup>. There were two plant protection systems: conventional and iMETOS®sm model’s. The data revealed that the most favourable conditions for strawberry grey mould development were in June. Comparison of different systems showed that both disease management systems reduced the spread of grey mould, but most efficient were iMETOS®sm. The applications by model gave yield increases in 2008-2009 and 2013-2014 of 0.95 t ha<sup>-1</sup>, 9.5 t ha<sup>-1</sup>, 4.28 t ha<sup>-1</sup> and 3.21 t ha<sup>-1</sup>, respectively compared to the control. There was less rotten fruits in iMETOS®sm (0.67 t ha<sup>-1</sup>, 2.28 t ha<sup>-1</sup>, 0.25 t ha<sup>-1</sup> and 0.60 t ha<sup>-1</sup>). iMETOS®sm model helped to optimize fungicide application and allows more efficient, ecologically and economically accepted control of strawberries grey mould.</p> <p><strong>Keywords:</strong> <em>Botrytis cinerea, </em>disease risk, incidence, leaf wetness</div>