Robust apple and pear varieties are an important tool in sustainable fireblight management. Two artificial inoculation methods are used for assessing a pome-fruit cultivar’s susceptibility to fireblight: shoot inoculation and blossom inoculation. Since 2013, Agroscope has for the first time been in a position to conduct artificial blossom inoculation tests on an outdoor trial plot that is unique in Switzerland. A correlation analysis was used to test both methods as to their comparability. A weakly positive correlation was detected, which was nevertheless not significant. Cultivars with low susceptibility in the shoot inoculation in the greenhouse also often proved to be robust in the blossom inoculation. With some cultivars, however, susceptibility in the shoot inoculation was markedly under- or overestimated compared to susceptibility in the blossom inoculation. For better transferability of the results to practice, the most promising candidate cultivars from the shoot inoculation should therefore also be tested outdoors by means of artificial blossom inoculation. The combination of the two test methods and the additional observations on the susceptibility of the cultivars from practice will allow us to make reliable recommendations of fireblight-tolerant varieties for Swiss pome-fruit production.
Stucky T., Hochstrasser M., Meyer S., Segessemann T., Ruthes A. C., Ahrens C. H., Dahlin P., Pelludat C.
The root knot nematode (RKN) Meloidogyne incognita causes damage in field and greenhouse crops. Agroscope researchers have developed a new screening test to identify bacteria that antagonise this agricultural pest.
With CULTAN fertilisation, nitrogen is injected into the soil as an ammonium solution. Multi-year trials conducted by Agroscope show that this method reduces nitrogen leaching by an average 38% without negatively affecting yields.
Tuta absoluta is one of the most destructive pests of solanaceous crops. Agroscope has developed a statistical model to study the population dynamics of the pest and its parasitoids and allows interventions to be optimally planned.