Managing Downy Mildew in Spinach - Part 2
Yesterday we reported on how researchers in Southern California were finding that drip irrigation could help organic spinach growers reduce incidents of Downy mildew. UC Cooperative Extension irrigation and water advisor Ali Montazar led the project. He says the approach has numerous advantages.
Montazar… “We can reduce the Downy mildew and food safety issue. We can reduce the nitrogen or fertilizer use. We can reduce the energy use. I think that's very important. You know, greenhouse gas emission is coming from sprinkler and with drip we reduce that energy cost and greenhouse gas emissions. I think they are all the benefits of using drip but for me, I think Downy mildew control and food safety, they are a really game changers for using drip for spinach.”
Montazar added that even some conventional growers are taking notice.
Montazar… “One of the growers adopted drip technology for conventional spinach. So this grower reported great promises with using for conventional (spinach). He conserved fertilizer use for conventional spinach. Less energy use, less fertilizer, less labor cost and less water treatment product for Downy mildew and food safety issues.”
The three-year study is currently in its final stages.