Potato Grower

March 2022

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44 POTATO GROWER | MARCH 2022 FINAL COUNTDOWN BAYER'S 75-DAY IPM POTATO PROGRAM By Tyrell Marchant 75. It's a pretty prominent number in the potato industry. Seventy-five days is a fairly standard measurement for taking care of a potato crop. If you can make it to 75 days with a healthy- looking spud field, you're well on your way to a successful harvest. But those first 75 days can be a cyclone of problems for an unprepared potato grower. It's when potatoes are most likely to fall prey to pest and disease pressure. That's precisely the reason Bayer Crop Science has developed its 75-day IPM potato program. The goal is not simply to find the best product for a grower to use at a particular time, but to develop a more holistic approach for growing and protecting a healthy crop over that 75-day timeframe. "We asked ourselves, 'Where can Bayer make the most difference for growers?'" says Bayer produce manager Monte Sorensen. "We're not trying to teach growers anything new. But if you can get your crop established and protected in that first 75 days, it puts you in a really good place to have a successful season. And we've built the program around that." Bayer is touting the program's ability to create an "agronomic force field safeguarding potatoes through whatever nature throws in the way." Longtime standout products Admire Pro insecticide, Emesto Silver fungicide and Velum Prime nematicide are the backbone of the program, with other products filling in the gaps to form that force field. An incentive program is in place for growers who qualify by using certain products in concert. But the company is actively trying not to be overly prescriptive for growers, says Sorensen. "We're not necessarily looking at what to do on specific days," he says. "The idea is to show where these products shine from a cropping standpoint. It's a guide that's customizable for every farm." With Bayer's 75-day IPM program as a backdrop, let's count down to harvest, looking at the different pressures facing growers throughout the season, and which products the folks at Bayer recommend for each. To learn more, visit www.bayerpotato75dayipm.com 6. Pre-Plant Pressures: Fusarium tuber rot, seed- and soil-borne Rhizoctonia, silver scurf, wireworms,

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