POSTERS: Cultural control
AUTONOMOUS UV-C APPLICATION ON TABLETOP STRAWBERRIES TO CONTROL MILDEW: OPTIMIZATION AND COMPATIBILITY WITH IPM
Marieke Vervoort - Research centre Hoogstraten.
UV-C light is a promising technique that can tackle current issues of powdery mildew management in strawberry: chemical resistance and fruit residue. A prototype robot is used to apply UV-C on tabletop strawberries and a strategy for mildew control is being developed. The side-effect of UV-C is also assessed on crop yield, other diseases, pests and beneficials to ultimately integrate UV-C in integrated pest managment. Results reveal that nighttime application has an increased efficiency compared to daytime application. Three applications a week throughout the cultivation resulted in sufficient disease control. Side-effects of UV-C are both positive and negative as spider mite and beneficial mites (A. limonicus) are harmed by UV-C with a more substantial suppression at night. No other side-effects were revealed thus far. Integration of UV-C in IPM will be challenging but if we succeed, it will be a big step forward to sustainable strawberry production.