It's fusarium Jim, but not as we know it
The long dry summer followed by mild, wet autumn and winter has caused a new problem for greenkeepers - a more virulent strain of microdochium nivale, or fusarium patch as it is more commonly known.
The changes that are taking place in the traditional seasonal make-up have caused instances of a reversion of this common turf disease to its natural state. The effect is that the usual symptoms - orange-brown patches, 2.5 to 5 cm or more across, coalescing to affect large areas - are no longer apparent.
Instead the disease appears as spores on the grass, making identification extremely difficult. Indeed, many very experienced greenkeepers have been left in some doubt as to exactly what this new manifestation is.
Having identified the disease, the problem becomes how to treat it. From reports across the country, it seems that the only product that works is Bayer Environmental Science 's fungicide, Chipco Green.
Fishing for CHIP information?
Most people involved in professional pest control will have heard of CHIP, but what exactly is it and what have been the implications for chemical suppliers such as Bayer Environmental Science?
CHIP 3 (it stands for Chemical Hazard Information and Packaging) is a set of HSE regulations covering the hazard information and packaging requirements for the supply of chemicals.
The purpose is to provide the necessary information on the chemicals used in a product so as to inform users of hazards and the precautions necessary to protect people and the environment.
This information can be delivered via the product label or via separate Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDS). CHIP specifies what information has to go onto the label and how it should be featured. The product label also features the approval conditions under The Control of Pesticides Regulations. For the MSDS, CHIP sets standards for information quality and gives 16 headings under which it should be provided.
Introduction of the latest CHIP regulations has necessitated the revision of affected Bayer Environmental Science product labels and MSDSs. These are already beginning to appear. The latest labels and MSDSs can be found on www.bayer-escience.co.uk.
All Bayer Environmental Science products will be classified under Chip 3 before the deadline of end of July 2004. This is the date when Manufacturers and Distributors need to have sold out of the Chip 2 labelled products. There is no deadline for end users to use up the Chip 2 labelled product.
Bayer Environmental Science man to chair Amenity Horticulture Committee
John Hall, European Marketing Manager, of Bayer Environmental Science has taken over the role of Chairman of The Amenity Horticulture Committee (AHC).
The committee in the future will be called The Amenity Expert Group.
The AHC meets twice a year, bringing together representatives from all of the major companies in the Amenity/Horticulture industry.
It acts as a channel through to the Health and Safety Executive and Trading Standards, the Pesticides Safety Directorate and works to promote the Government's Voluntary Initiative on minimising the environmental impacts of pesticides.
John Hall brings a wealth of experience to the Committee, having worked in the technical/commercial and marketing areas of the industry for over 8 years.
"It is my aim to continue the good work of the committee in promoting Best Practice in the Amenity and Horticulture Industry to work towards a better environment" John commented. "In the short/medium term this will be achieved through the important channel of The Voluntary Initiative."
Contact: Bayer Environmental Science Tel: 01992 784270