Thursday, October 31, 2013

The Good, the Bad and the Very Smelly.

There is lots happening with the Kiwifruit at the moment. We are both working hard at bud thinning. Compost has been spread under the vines.

 Here the front end loader is filling the trailer which has a spreader on the back. While he spreads the next one gets filled up.
 Look at the ground level to see the compost being spread behind.
 The back view.
 It is VERY smelly and will be for the next few days.
 Note also in the middle photo the new yellow row numbers ( actually cattle ear tags )on the end post  that R has nailed to both ends of each row. So now as well as block numbers we have individual row numbers.( not names  for every plant yet! ) This will make identifying individual plants much easier. ( for a variety of reasons. ) 

PSA the disease that is attacking  Kiwifruit vines has made a small appearance on our orchard this week.
 I found a male vine with leaf spotting.( the 1st noticeable symptom )  The spots are straight edged not round and lie along the veins firstly.
 Yesterday afternoon our first job was removing all the branches with spotted  leaves. Capturing them in a large plastic sack for disposal; disinfecting our secateurs and loppers in meths as we went.

 You can see it doesn't look very bad or very obvious at this stage.

 This is how much we cut from this male vine.
Every cut has to be painted with red bacseal an anti bacterial paste.
 Any vines that are infected or suspect are identified with red ribbons, but the row numbers will help too. These marked vines will be monitored even more closely then the rest to see if the disease progresses and needs more removal. The good thing we found was there was NO red oose or other symptoms of die back or stripes on female flower buds.( at this time )We have quite a number of red ribbons hanging in different blocks to keep and eye on certain vines.
 Doing all this is time consuming but if it saves the vine and halts spread to it's neighbours we will do it. The vine we worked on yesterday is in the coldest, windiest spot in that block - conditions that suit PSA 
( strangely as it is a bacterial infection  - spread by touching; by wind; by rain splashes ;by birds; insects; on feet; on hands ; on clothing etc etc ! ).
 We spray our secateurs with meths after each vine we work on so both carry spray bottles with us.
 We are in an area called a containment area - we just manage any symptoms we have and try not to spread it around our orchard or to any body else's orchard. A high % of BOP orchards now have some vines with PSA. 


Thimbleanna said...

Oh dear, I was hoping the disease wouldn't reach you. I hope your containment efforts work -- Good Luck!

Nicky said...

Such hard work, but worth it if you can keep the dreadful disease to a minimum as long as possible.

Sooziii said...

Fingers crossed your containment works.