Recent trials using low-volume misting (LVM) to apply Mycotal to control whitefly and thrips have shown some very positive results. We carried out the research into the LVM application of this effective bio-insecticide in collaboration with Anthura – the world’s number one breeder of Anthuriums.
‘We needed to find out if Mycotal spores were spatially evenly distributed in the greenhouse when applied via LVM systems,’ our consultant, Marjolein van der Knaap, explains. ‘The second question was: Are Mycotal spores sufficiently concentrated to control insect pests when applied this way? And finally: Is Mycotal compatible with existing LVM systems? In order to investigate the time and space distribution of Mycotal spores in the greenhouse, we placed Petri dishes amongst the plants at fixed times and rates for a few consecutive weeks.’
Demo trials collaboration with Anthura
Mycotal was applied (2kg/ha) together with an adjuvant (Eko-mist) at two locations in the greenhouse using the LVM device. At different time points, five leaves were sampled from one plant and rinsed with water. This water was then placed in three Petri dishes and incubated until the growth of microbial colonies was observed. Results from this pilot assay showed that fungal colonies fully covered the Petri dishes.
Our researchers then randomly selected eight plants from the greenhouse and brought them to the laboratory. Petri dishes were infested with whitefly, incubated in a climate cell, and insect mortality monitored. ‘The practical experiment in the greenhouse followed up with tests in the laboratory, proved the LVM application to be highly effective,’ Marjolein concludes.
Effective LVM dispersal
‘It’s significant that the initial query about LVM application actually came from growers, which again proves how important it is to listen to our valued customers,’ Marjolein points out. ‘Our R&D department responded to the growers’ queries by writing a proposal to research the LVM application of Mycotal. Anthura had the LVM system in place and allowed us to conduct these important trials. A true collaboration.’
‘Besides proving that Mycotal can be effectively distributed via existing low-volume mist systems, the LVM application also proved to be labour-saving. With the successful distribution of active Mycotal spores in the crop, the results are certainly positive,’ Marjolein confirms.
Win-win for Koppert and Anthura
At Anthura, the Head of Anthurium Cultivation, Peter Vogel, says the trials gave sufficient proof that LVM provided a good distribution of Mycotal spores throughout the crop. ‘Using LVM does not disturb other processes in the greenhouse either and saves time compared to regular spraying action,’ he remarks.
‘Together with Koppert, we combined product knowledge and research skills with the practical situation on-site at Anthura. This was very important,’ says Peter Vogel. ‘We got the information they needed on the efficacy of LVM distribution of Mycotal spores and gained more confidence in this bio-insecticide. At the same time, Koppert got the confirmation they needed about using this method through the successful trials at Anthura. A win-win situation for both parties.’
‘In the end, both R&D and Anthura were satisfied with the results of the application,’ Marjolein added. ‘The correct application of our biological solution is crucial for the optimal efficacy of Mycotal. Our collaboration with Anthura was a truly rewarding experience!’