Let the almonds grow

Heavy rainfall calls for increased disease management


Almond growers in California experienced flooding and heavy rainfall last spring, resulting in a high risk for disease potential this year. Due to these conditions, many growers had difficulties applying bloom fungicides at the ideal timing, causing them to wonder what this year’s season will bring. 


“While we can’t control the amount of rain we receive, we can take the necessary steps to prevent diseases to the best of our ability in orchards,” said Leigh Ann Harrison, BASF Technical Service Representative. “Winter sanitation efforts can make all the difference for the health of an orchard.”


One preventative step growers can take to avoid the spread of disease is winter sanitation. These efforts include making dormant fungicide applications, pruning diseased wood, cleaning off mummies infected with pathogens and cleaning up the orchard floor. Harrison recommends that growers begin these efforts directly after harvest, but notes there is still time for growers to complete these steps.


“Post-harvest is a better time for a grower to do any pruning and cleaning up of their orchard, because fresh pruning wounds in the spring, coupled with spring rains, are a vulnerable target for infection by wood diseases,” said Harrison.


Now is also a good time for growers to create their crop protection plan. By proactively establishing a fungicide program, growers can apply fungicides preventatively in case of early bloom or unexpected weather patterns.


“While there is no crystal ball growers can use to predict weather patterns, they can include planning for inclement weather in their fungicide programs,” said Harrison. “When dealing with flooding or very wet soils, growers need to find another way to apply fungicides than by ground.”


In case of flooding, Harrison notes aerial applications of fungicides, such as Merivon® Xemium® brand fungicide can be made on almonds. By having the product on hand and understanding the label, growers can jump in right away and apply the product as it’s needed to ensure the health of their orchard.


Other diseases such as rust and scab, are also becoming a great concern to almond growers. Therefore, when growers are establishing their fungicide programs, they should keep in mind that fungicides can be applied to prevent mid-season diseases. That way, plants can focus on what they do best, like photosynthesizing and producing efficient almond production, rather than on combating diseases.


To learn more about Merivon fungicide, contact your local BASF representative or visit www.GrowSmartAlmonds.com.


Always read and follow label directions.


Merivon and Xemium are registered trademarks of BASF.


About BASF’s Crop Protection division


With a rapidly growing population, the world is increasingly dependent on our ability to develop and maintain sustainable agriculture and healthy environments. BASF’s Crop Protection division works with farmers, agricultural professionals, pest management experts and others to help make this possible. With their cooperation, BASF is able to sustain an active R&D pipeline, an innovative portfolio of products and services, and teams of experts in the lab and in the field to support customers in making their businesses succeed. In 2016, BASF’s Crop Protection division generated sales of €5.6 billion. For more information, please visit us at www.agriculture.basf.com or on any of our social media channels.


About BASF


BASF Corporation, headquartered in Florham Park, New Jersey, is the North American affiliate of BASF SE, Ludwigshafen, Germany. BASF has nearly 17,500 employees in North America, and had sales of $16.2 billion in 2016. For more information about BASF’s North American operations, visit www.basf.us.


At BASF, we create chemistry for a sustainable future. We combine economic success with environmental protection and social responsibility. The approximately 114,000 employees in the BASF Group work on contributing to the success of our customers in nearly all sectors and almost every country in the world. Our portfolio is organized into five segments: Chemicals, Performance Products, Functional Materials & Solutions, Agricultural Solutions and Oil & Gas. BASF generated sales of about €58 billion in 2016. BASF shares are traded on the stock exchanges in Frankfurt (BAS), London (BFA) and Zurich (BAS). Further information at www.basf.com.