On behalf of Nick:
Andy and Karen,
Farmlands have told me in the past that they cannot get Mankocide,
but when I asked this year they provided it no trouble. Getting an application rate is bit more difficult. Another local grower (Eastern Bay of Plenty) has used a product with a name like Kocide Plus, which is a copper spray with some bactericide added. In the past I have used Kocide, but found it pretty ineffective, so am going to try Mankocide this year. With our big trees we use a helicopter, so cannot express an opinion on boom spraying.
Time of application is another aspect to get our heads around. I have decided that it cannot be economic to put on more than one application of spray. You would have to get crops beyond my wildest dreams for that. So that makes application time quite important. From my reading, the best time is not actually at bud burst, like you would for stone fruit crops. The Sun-Diamond website, (In the days when you could look it up without a members password.) used to talk about the ‘praying-hand’ stage as the time to start applying copper sprays/Mankocide. i.e. when the terminal shoots look like praying hands, so they have elongated a bit to get like this. In past years I have noticed that quite a large proportion of the male catkins have elongated by this stage. And if you have a wet spring a fair few will have rotted off by then and be on the ground, which does not do a lot for one’s confidence. But the times this has happened we still have had a reasonable pollination, so perhaps we ignore the male catkins and concentrate on the female flowers which are at the point of emergence at the praying hand stage?
I hope this helps, as it sounds as if I am not any further along than you on this topic.
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