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Sooty blotch/flyspeck

Posted by Josh Karp 
Sooty blotch/flyspeck
June 22, 2018 04:48PM
I have some vars that are susceptible to summer diseases & want to start doin something about it. Not willing to spray sulfur all summer..was thinking about Regalia - this product claims to give 'induced systemic resistance' to trees so they can fight off these diseases. sooty blotch & fly speck are listed on the Regalia label as controllable diseases. Wondering if anyone's used Regalia for this purpose, and also the application timing..was thinking that since SB & FS develop gradually over many rain events, spraying before a rain would be the right approach. I wonder how long the ISR 'lasts' after a spray.
Or, does anyone have other tricks to deal with summer diseases? I've been trying to prune with airflow/drying in mind..but maybe I've just not been pruning out enough.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 06/22/2018 04:51PM by Josh Karp.
Re: Sooty blotch/flyspeck
June 25, 2018 05:45PM
Last year I used Regalia to address sooty blotch and fly speck in a block of Fuji, Goldrush, and Pink Lady. I was not pleased with the results, but assume that the problem may be that I was not using a strong enough rate. I sprayed 1 qt/A approximately every 10 days during the typical season for these diseases. I think I'll increase my rate this year, unless others would advise against it as a waste of money. I'd love to hear what others have to say about this.

Clair Kauffman
Zone 6b, Lancaster, Pennsylvania
Re: Sooty blotch/flyspeck
June 26, 2018 10:58PM
Each pathogen has a strategy by which to gain access to plant tissue and thus cause infection. The "aesthetic fungi" that cause sooty blotch and flyspeck feed on the waxy plant cuticle. What we can do as growers to alter this dynamic is either apply an across-the-board toxin (like summertime copper) or help the plant create a more robust cuticle where surface niches are filled with friendly organisms. Immune phytochemistry is not directly called into play in such a scenario as the action is taking place on the fruit surface rather than within tissue. A product like Regalia may help boost tree metabolism through an induced systemic response but it's kind of a back door approach to only part of the solution. I'm not surprised by your experience, Clair, though I do wonder why these summer diseases are listed on the product label. Perhaps the extraction chemistry used to get constituents out of knotweed root (the herbal essence of Regalia) contributes an abrasive edge to knock back SBFS fungi?

Lost Nation Orchard
Zone 4b in New Hampshire



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 06/27/2018 01:50PM by Michael Phillips.
Re: Sooty blotch/flyspeck
June 27, 2018 03:56PM
I appreciate the feedback!

Clair Kauffman
Zone 6b, Lancaster, Pennsylvania
Re: Sooty blotch/flyspeck
January 19, 2020 01:49AM
Just back from a winter retreat. An orchardist here in Iowa uses neem oil and insecticidal soap to control sooty blotch and flyspeck. Anyone else with experience using this combination?

Turkey Creek Orchard
Solon, Iowa (zone 5A)
Re: Sooty blotch/flyspeck
January 29, 2021 06:43AM
I am also interested in any feedback anyone could provide on their success against flyspeck/sooty blotch. We have had issues with it every year, especially with our Goldrush.

Brandt Schisler
Hickory Ridge Orchard
Zone 6b in Missouri
Re: Sooty blotch/flyspeck
January 29, 2021 05:27PM
I ended up using Milstop with considerable success. Start applying it before it becomes visible on the apples.

Turkey Creek Orchard
Solon, Iowa (zone 5A)
Re: Sooty blotch/flyspeck
January 29, 2021 06:30PM
Thank you for the reply Peter. Thoughts on the effects of potassium bicarbonate on beneficial microbes? I am reading the label on this product and it says 2-5 lbs an acre. Is that what you found most effective for you? I was thinking if I was to use it I would use it only on my gold rush and direct spray tree canopy. Then follow up with a calcium tea and silica tea a couple days after. I tried just the calcium tea and silica tea by itself last year and still had issues. I have faith in Michael's strategies so perhaps I didn't apply enough, and for a long enough period of time, to see positive results. And perhaps it takes years to establish a healthy enough environment to see positive results as it has only been 20 months since we went completely holistic with our orchard.

Brandt Schisler
Hickory Ridge Orchard
Zone 6b in Missouri
Re: Sooty blotch/flyspeck
January 29, 2021 07:40PM
One thing I will add here is that infections can occur weeks/months before symptoms, and so preventing infections is critical to preventing symptoms. The post-infection pre-symptomatic sprays are effective as a surface sanitizer. Generally speaking, though, infections can't really begin until ~275 LWH (leaf wetting hours) after 90% petal fall. This can be a matter of days, weeks or even months depending on local conditions. Sprays that are timed not just to prevent expression of symptoms but prevent infections should be timed to ~275 LWH 90% pPF. You can use the NEWA site to do track this for your area using the most local weather station that's plugged into the system.

as an example: NEWA - North Appleton NY

Sooty Blotch/Flyspeck Fact Sheet

Mike Biltonen, Know Your Roots
Zone 5b in New York
Re: Sooty blotch/flyspeck
January 29, 2021 08:08PM
Mike, this is unbelievably good information. Your input is greatly appreciated.

Brandt Schisler
Hickory Ridge Orchard
Zone 6b in Missouri
Re: Sooty blotch/flyspeck
January 30, 2021 07:08PM
I have been using the calcium and silica teas for a few years and like you found that this was not enough to make much of a dent in the sooty blotch and fly speck. I started spraying July 27. I did not have the benefit of Mike's information on timing so I was just guessing, based on rain events in July. I don't know about the effects on beneficial microbes but I imagine the thing to do is to follow up the Milstop with a compost tea or EM spray.
I can't be much help on spray volume. We have a very small orchard, with a mix of tree sizes.

Turkey Creek Orchard
Solon, Iowa (zone 5A)
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