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Compost Tea, Powdery Mildew and Pumpkins Data researched Field Trail conducted Conclusions presented here *Research was entirely self-funded. By: Matthew.

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Presentation on theme: "Compost Tea, Powdery Mildew and Pumpkins Data researched Field Trail conducted Conclusions presented here *Research was entirely self-funded. By: Matthew."— Presentation transcript:

1 Compost Tea, Powdery Mildew and Pumpkins Data researched Field Trail conducted Conclusions presented here *Research was entirely self-funded. By: Matthew DeBacco f

2 Compost Tea Research The following publications were used as a starting point... Compost Tea Study Scheuerell, S.J. and Mahaffee, W.F Variability associated with suppression of gray mold (Botrytis cinerea) on geranium by foliar applications of nonaerated compost teas. Plant Dis. 90: Shows the effect of milk on Powdery Mildew Ferrandino, F.J. and Smith, V.L The effect of milk-based foliar sprays on yield components of field pumpkins with powdery mildew. Crop Protection Vol. 26 Issue 4 pg Photo taken by Matthew DeBacco

3 Compost Tea Research More sources of background info. 3 year Compost Tea Study Hepperly, P.R. et al Compost Tea for Disease management in Horticultural Crops. Northeast SARE Research and Education Grant. Plant-Microbe Interactions Ramey, B.E. et al Biofilm formation in plant-microbe associations. Current Opinion in Microbiology 7: Milk and Powdery Mildew Bettiol, W.; Astiarraga, B.D.; Luiz, A.J.B. Efectiveness of cow's milk against zucchini squash powdery mildew (Sphaerotheca fuliginea) in greenhouse conditions. Crop Protection, Guildford, v.18, n.8, p , Photo taken by Matthew DeBacco

4 Consistency is Key Make sure at the beginning of the season there are enough materials to last for the entire growing season. The first brew should be as close as possible in biological make-up to the last brew.

5 Components to the Tea: Materials Water (dechlorinated) Quality compost Food for the microbes Brewers used

6 Water Make sure to dechlorinate it!! Photo taken by Matthew DeBacco

7 Quality Compost Make sure you select a good source. Yard waste can be inconsistent. Suggested Sources: Alaskan Humus Worm Castings Photo taken by Matthew DeBacco

8 Food for Microbes Wide variety of food = wide variety of microbes

9 Two types of brewers were used Passively Aerated (ex. SoilSoup) Actively Aerated (ex. Keep-It-Simple)

10 Types of Aeration Passively Aerated (Stirring the water) Actively Aerated (Adding air to the water)

11 Specifics: Water My town does not add chloramine to the water, only chlorine. So, the water was allowed to sit overnight and/or aerated prior to brewing to remove chlorine. Photo taken by Matthew DeBacco

12 Quality Compost Alaskan Humus or Worm Castings suggested I decided to do a 50/50 mix of the above. Photos taken by Matthew DeBacco

13 Tea Bags Alaskan Humus / Worm Casting mix was added to a 1 gal. nylon paint strainer and secured shut with an elastic band. Photo taken by Matthew DeBacco

14 Food for the Microbes Since I wanted a wide variety of microbes, I selected a variety of food. SoilSoup Nutrient Solution Joel Holland's Kelp Organic Gem Fish Emulsion TurfPro

15 Methods Experiment layout Recipe Length of brews Timing of applications How the brews were applied The way the data was collected

16 Experiment layout 5 Treatment Groups 1. Control, no treatment 2. Compost Tea (active) and 40% milk 3. Compost Tea (active) and Serenade MAX + 40% milk 4. Compost Tea (passive) and 40% milk 5. Chemical control (fungicide)

17 Why 40% milk? BETTIOL, W.; ASTIARRAGA, B.D.; LUIZ, A.J.B. Efectiveness of cow's milk against zucchini squash powdery mildew (Sphaerotheca fuliginea) in greenhouse conditions. Crop Protection, Guildford, v.18, n.8, p , Photo taken by Matthew DeBacco

18 Standard Compost Tea Recipe Actively and Passively Aerated Brews Compost: 0.8 oz. per gallon Alaskan Humus 0.8 oz. per gallon Worm Castings Nutrients: 1oz. per gallon SoilSoup Nutrient solution 0.5 tsp per gallon Organic Gem Fish 0.5 tsp per gallon Joel Holland Kelp 0.5 tsp per gallon TurfPro

19 Bacteria Recipe Bacillus subtilis (QST 713 strain) Bacteria Brew Serenade MAX 0.5 tsp per gallon SoilSoup Nutrient Solution 1 oz. per gallon To the finished (12-14 hr.) actively aerated bacteria brew, milk was added and applied on the milk schedule.

20 Special application Since Powdery Mildew was the focus of this study, 2.6 cups of powdered milk was added per gallon (to give a 40% solution) and applied separately once a week. NOT the same day of a compost tea treatment *Think of it as*... Monday: applying Compost Tea and Friday: applying Milk Treatment

21 Same recipe was used for both methods of brewers Only variations... Method of aeration Brew time -Passive aeration: hours -Active aeration: hours

22 Fungicide Control Daconil (a.i. Chlorothalonil) was used on a day spray schedule. Photo taken by Matthew DeBacco

23 Timing of applications Compost Tea treatments were applied every 7-10 days and were timed to be after a rain, if possible. Milk treatments were also on a separate 7-10 day schedule. All were applied before sunrise or after sunset to prevent phytotoxicity and increase microbe survival rates. Photo taken by Matthew DeBacco

24 How Brews were applied A regular, hand powered back-pack sprayer was used. This allowed for pin-point accuracy. Different sprayers were used for each treatment to prevent cross contamination. All equipment used was rinsed out after every use. (Includes brewers and sprayers) Photo taken by Lucy DeBacco

25 How the data was collected Basic in-field notes and observations were documented. Since the Powdery Mildew severity was based on visual observations, I had someone who did not know about my study compare their independent scorings with mine, and they almost directly correlated. This indicates my numbers are a fair assessment and valid for comparison.

26 Observed Field Results The following is the side by side comparison between a no treatment, control (on the left) and a plant that only received actively aerated Compost Tea and 40% milk treatments (on the right). The following pictures were taken around the middle of August 2007.

27 Photo taken by Matthew DeBacco

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30 Different Angle Notice the top two leaves are the control and the bottom 7 leaves are part of the Compost Tea and milk treatment group. Photo taken by Matthew DeBacco

31 Time warp about a month to Mid September 2007 Later that growing season....

32 Difference is easily noticeable in mid Sept Photo taken by Matthew DeBacco

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34 Hindsight is always 20/20 If you look at the last picture, you will notice both leaves have Downy Mildew at this point. It looks like small oily spots that can appear to be yellow in coloration. While I did not notice Downy Mildew at the time of the picture, I did once the symptoms became more severe. I then threw out my last data set, so the following numbers were not slighted.

35 Scale used to generate numbers

36 Data Charts

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40 Basic Summary Actively aerated compost tea suppressed powdery mildew better than passively aerated. Adding a bacteria brew did not increase the ability to suppress disease. Fungicide treatment was still the most effective method. All plants became infected with Downy Mildew late in the season.

41 Suggestions for future research The addition of adjutants can increase the effectiveness of Compost Tea based on... Scheuerell, S.J. and Mahaffee, W.F Variability associated with suppression of gray mold (Botrytis cinerea) on geranium by foliar applications of nonaerated compost teas. Plant Dis. 90: I would suggest ThermX-70 Yucca extract at a rate of 0.2 tsp per gallon.

42 Thank you I hope that this provides some science to Compost Tea's use on Atlantic Giants. I would be interested in hearing any comments and suggestions you have, since I plan on continuing this research. By: Matthew DeBacco


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