After our first Blog post “Biopesticides?” we thought we would look a bit more specifically at what Biopesticides are used for. In the broadest sense Biopesticides are used for controlling pests and diseases in crops, they have many subtle and nuanced advantages over conventional chemistry other than the obvious environmental benefits. Here’s an overview of a few of our most used Biopesticides:
What is Prestop? Prestop is a concentration of mycelium and spores of Clonostachys rosea (previously named Gliocladium catenulatum) strain J1446, a fungus that is naturally present in soil and decomposing organic matter. The strain J1446 is the result of research by Lallemand Plant Care and has been isolated for use as a broad-spectrum fungicide.
How to use Prestop? Prestop can be used as a foliar spray or soil drench.
Why use Prestop? Prestop is broad spectrum, and has a wide range of application methods approved on a wide range of horticultural crops being approved for all protected edible and non-edible crops and having EAMU’s for nearly every outdoor crop. It is demonstrating better efficacy than some synthetic chemicals, for example a recent AHDB protected ornamental trial showed it was +40% more effective against botrytis than an alternating programme of Amistar/Rovral. Persistent for 3 weeks it is also very tolerant to varying conditions making Prestop a must for most horticultural IPM programmes.
What is Azatin? Azatin is a concentrate of the natural plant extract azadirachtin, derived from Neem trees. The product is broad spectrum but with an on-label approval for the control of the major horticultural pest; western flower thrips in protected ornamental crops.
How to use Azatin? Azatin is to be used as a foliar spray in protected environments 7-14 days before any flowers open. There can be up to 20 applications per crop.
Why use Azatin? Azatin has good efficacy due to three modes of action; contact, ingestion & translaminar. A high number of applications per crop, coupled with good compatibility with a range of beneficial insects makes Azatin a very useful IPM tool for the control of western flower thrips. The AHDB AMBRE project has even showed the same control level as Actara (thimethoxam) a now banned neonicotinoid insecticide.
What is Spruzit? Spruzit is a formulation of pyrethrins, a plant extract found in chrysanthemums, and a naturally derived rapeseed oil.
How to use Spruzit? Spruzit is a foliar spray requiring good coverage to achieve contact with the pest. It can be used to control a wide range of sucking and biting pests on edibles and non-edibles both indoors and outdoors.
Why use Spruzit? Spruzit controls a wide range of pests so can be a useful IPM tool, its natural activity on a pest’s nervous system gives it a quick knockdown action. This makes it very useful when pest numbers rapidly multiply above threshold levels and allows for quick reintroduction of beneficial predators. Organic approval with OF&G is also a benefit for organic systems.
What are BT Biopesticides? Bacillus thuringiensis is a natural soil dwelling bacterium and is specifically for the control of caterpillars (Lepidoptera). There are several Bacillus thuringiensis based Biopesticides of slightly differing strains and with approvals on different crops.
How to use BT Biopesticides? Bacillus thuringiensis is most effective on the earliest feeding stages of Lepidoptera, so needs to be applied at the first sign of the pest. It must be ingested by the pest to be effective, although it may not cause death for 2-4 days the pest will stop feeding almost immediately. As all the BT’s are slightly differing strains, using them in rotation where approvals allow improves control.
Why use BT Biopesticides? Lepidoptera such as Diamond Back Moth (DBM) are some of the most commercially destructive pests in horticulture with strong resistance to a lot of synthetic chemical pesticides. Bacillus thuringiensis offers an excellent control option when used correctly and has proved to be the best DBM control option in most crops.
What is Romeo? Romeo is based on Cerevisane a purified extract from Saccharomyces cerevisae. It has an interesting and novel mode of action as a fungicide and mimics a fungal attack on the plant acting to strengthen the plant against disease.
How to use Romeo? Romeo has no direct effect on plant diseases therefore has to be used preventatively as a foliar spray. Any increase resistance takes 24hrs to develop, repeated treatments every 7-10 days will help maintain disease resistance in crops.
Why use Romeo? Many “Bio-Stimulants” claim to offer increased resistance to disease but as Romeo has been through the official approval process it has proven efficacy (see our Blog post; “Biopesticides?” for an explanation of the difference between Bio-Stimulants and Biopesticides). Use Romeo specifically in approved crops susceptible to Botrytis, powdery mildew and downy mildew.
What is Naturalis-L? Naturalis-L is an insecticide containing Beauveria bassiana a natural soil fungus that acts as a parasite on various pests. It is used for the control of Whitefly and thrips in glasshouse crops.
How to use Naturalis-L? Naturalis-L is a foliar spray and does require certain environmental conditions to achieve good levels of efficacy so is only suitable for controlled cropping environments. Temperature is best between 20-30°C with a relative humidity of over 60%.
Why use Naturalis-L? Glasshouse whitefly populations have resistance to many commonly used synthetic chemical insecticides, the use of Naturalis-L offers an alternative active in IPM programmes. If conditions are correct Beauveria bassiana will survive and multiply for a long period on a leaf surface offering continued control.
What is Flipper? Flipper has now been in the UK for a number of years but got off to a bit of a false start due to varying commercial reasons. Now being marketed by Bayer; it is a contact insecticide derived from carboxylic acid potassium salts from plants.
How to use Flipper? Flipper is a foliar spray that requires contact with the pest to get control, it is best to be used with high water volumes of around 600-1,000lt ha. Make sure it is not mixed with any metallic based fungicides or foliar feeds which may reduce efficacy.
Why use Flipper? When used correctly Flipper has similar performance on whitefly and scale insects to previously used synthetic chemical insecticides now off the market. As well as this Flipper is safe for a wide range of beneficial insects making it an excellent IPM tool.
What is Serenade ASO? Serenade ASO is an old stalwart of the Biopesticide market having be around in the UK for well over a decade. Serenade ASO is based on Bacillus subtilis strain QST 713 and is mainly used as a fungicide to control Botrytis in a wide range of crops.
How to use Serenade ASO? Serenade ASO can be used as a foliar spray to control Botrytis or soil applied for the control of Pythium and Phytophthora.
Why use Serenade ASO? Serenade ASO has proven efficacy over many years of use in commercial copping and can have huge benefits for crops susceptible to Botrytis. Its zero harvest interval means it can be used right up until harvest on strawberry crops protecting the fruit.
For more in-depth information regarding application of Biopesticides be sure to consult your agronomist or speak to us regarding our agronomy services.