Getting Past Carrot Disease Pressure
April 4, 2017
Carrot Growers Hindered by Rain Over Winter and Spring
By Patrick Cavanaugh, Farm News Director
Carrot producers from around the world joined together in Bakersfield for the 38th Annual International Carrot Conference. Jeff Harrington is Senior Manager of Ag Operations for Bolthouse Farms, a major fresh carrot producer. He also does seed procurement and agronomy work. He noted that there were presenters from around the world presenting research from the last couple of years.
“In some cases, they’re going back from the late ’80s, this research that they’ve been doing in regards to disease resistance in carrots, breeding and gnomic markers that they’re finding for these resistances,” Harrington said.
As for pressures impacting California Carrot Growers, Harrington noted, “Of course the recent challenge would be water. Then also disease pressure that’s associated with the excess of water that we’ve had this winter and spring.”
“We have not been able to get into some fields to plant, so we have been hunting around for dry ground all over the state,” Harrington said.
Harrington also discussed some of the problematic pest and diseases that growers often face in the industry. “Definitely it’s nematodes and then cavity spot and alternaria leaf blight,” Harrington said.
Harrington explained how the carrot industry often gets past some of these most troublesome diseases.
“Some varieties have a stronger top that help us with those diseases such as Alternaria. And we are seeing more varieties that are … tolerant to cavity spot some. And then we use soil fumigants that help with against nematode pressure. The fumigants also help with weed pressure,” he said.