xt79cn6xx54f https://nyx.uky.edu/dips/xt79cn6xx54f/data/mets.xml Kentucky Agricultural Experiment Station 1949  journals  English Lexington, Ky Contact the Special Collections Research Center for information regarding rights and use of this collection. Kentucky Agricultural Experiment Station Kentucky fruit notes, vol. 4, No. 1, January 1949 text Kentucky fruit notes, vol. 4, No. 1, January 1949 1949 2012 true xt79cn6xx54f section xt79cn6xx54f   Vol. It January, 1*%+9 NO. 1
, Articles for "Kentucky Fruit Notes" are assembled under
Ei thcldirection of W. D. Armstrong, Horticulturist, at l
*1 theiilostern Kentucky Substation, Princeton, Kentucky.
 y   S P EG I A L
I kentucky Agricultural Experiment Station
·   i Lexington, Kentucky
s. ‘· iQT?§  li ` `

 .2 E .2 5   A
Strawberry Insect Pests and Their Control
P. O. Ritcher
Insects are responsible for more reduction in strawberry yield than is
commonly realized. Too often poor growth of plants or delayed setting of runners
because of crown borer damage is blamed on dry weather. Also, poorly formed
berries are often blamed on frost damage or cold weather when plant bugs or
other insects are the real cause of the trouble. This past season damage from
either crown borer, plant bugs or the strawberry weevil was severe in many
Kentucky patches. Injury from plant bugs and strawberry weevil was evident
during harvest in the spring; crown borer injury did not show up until late in the
92222 Pmer
Injury. Plants are killed or stunted and runner formation is reduced. l
Crowns_of injured plants contain blackish tunnels made by the borer grubs
(Fig. 5). Injury is much worse in dry seasons.
Life history. The adult insect (Fig. 6) is a small brown and black snout '
beetle a—l;>*iE_l_/Tgxnch long, which overwinters in or near the strawberry patch ,
under litter or in the soil. Adults become active on warm days in February and
March and eat holes in the strawberry leaves from the underside. They lay {
eggs from l\/[arch on through the summer, either in the plant crowns or in holes `
gnawed in the bases of the leaves. Eggs hatch into small, whitish, legless
grubs which bore through the strawberry crowns and leave dark colored, winding,
frass-filled burrows behind them (Fig. 5). The oldest grubs become full grown
by early june and after a l_O—day pupal stage, new adults begin emerging late in A
june. Adults continue to emerge thru October. There is usually only one _  
generation a year and as a rule only mother plants are infested by the larvae.
Control, 1. Set new patches with plants that are free of borer. Use
plants from p-a-tches certified to be free from borer or use plants dug before
March ] and washed free of all soil or use plants fumigated with methyl bromide.
Z. Set new patches on land previously cultivated and that is not closer than 350
yards to old strawberry patches, patches of cinquefoil or wild strawberries all {
of which are often heavily infested with crown borer. 3. If necessary to set a i
new patch close to an old infested patch apply bait to crowns of newly set plants.
The best bait consists of dried, chopped, apple refuse coated with 3-l/Z percent Q
sodium fluosilicate or 2-1/2 percent lead arsenate. A half teaspoonful of bait  
should be applied to the crown of each plant. First application should be made
in March and again at lO day to 2 week intervals. 4. Burn over old strawberry
patches soon after harvest and plow them under. Don't leave old abandoned
patches over the farm since they are breeding grounds for crown borer and
other_ strawberry pests.

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Fig. 1 — Strawberry weevils and their injury to strawberry buds.
Fig. Z - Strawberry weevil (much enlarged).
Fig. 3 — “Butt0n berries" caused by the feeding of the tarnished plant bug.
Fig. 4 - Tarnished plant bug (greatly enlarged; natural size l/4 inch long).

( §£r.e~y*2¢x2ix rwssyik
Injugy. Crop reduced by cutting off of bloom buds (Fig. l), blooms and
green berries.
Life history The adult (Fig 2.) is a tiny brown or blackish weevil with a
long bea_k_which deposits its eggs in the unopened blooms and then girdles or cuts
the buds so that they die or fall to the ground (Fig 1). Usually a single egg is laid
in each bud. The egg soon hatches into a whitish legless grub which eats the
contents cf the unopened bud, pupates, and then emerges as an adult weevil. New
adults feed for a short time and then go into hibernation in fence rows or woods.
In Kentucky adult weevils appear in strawberry patches in late March or
early April and begin cutting buds about the tirrie the first blossouns open. Beetles
are most active on warm sunny days, They also attack the buds of wild black
Cpntigolg In patches where weevil was bad last year make treatrnent as
soon as first blossoms open. ln other patches treat as soon as first cut buds are
For years cryolite has been the standard insecticide for the control of I
strawberry weevil. This material has given good results in Missouri, Tennessee,
Canada, and several other berry—producing areas. Cryolite is usually used as a
dust diluted with Z parts of talc or dusting sulfur to one part of cryolite. From _
30 to 50 pounds are needed to treat an acre.
Some of the new organic insecticides will undoubtedly replace cryolite
for weevil control in the near future. Evidence on the value of DDT dusts is
conflicting. Canadian workers report good control with 3% DDT dust. However, .
in tests which W. D. Armstrong and the writer made in Marshall county, Kentucky, -  
in 1948, 5% DDT dust gave no control at all,
Canadian workers also report good results with DDT spray. This is
confirmed by Mr. G. E1. Marshall of the Purdue Agricultural Experiment Station
who got good control of weevil last year in a berry patch near Bowling Green,
Kentucky, which he sprayed with 2 pounds of 50% wettable DDT per 100 gallons.
In a test which we ran near Sharpe, Kentucky, last season, excellent
weevil control was secured with one application of a 5% chlordan dust. We plan
to continue experimental. work on the control of strawberry weevil in 1949.
Iereieeeépley we
lnjuryr Fruits often fail to develop to normal size and have a hard, seedy
tip (often called "button" berries) (Fig. 3).
I;.iQe_ ljjjtory. The insect responsible for this type of damage is a small,
brownish plant bug (Fig. 4) which breeds on weeds in and near berry patches, The

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Fig. 5 — Crown borer grubs wo: king in crown of strawberry plant.
Fig. 6 — Adult crown borer, much enlarged.
Fig. 7 — May beetle, adult stage of white grub (slightly larger than natura. smc-).
Fig. 8 White grub injury to roots and crowns of strawberry plants.
Fig. 9 — White grub.

injury is caused by the young bugs (nymphs) sucking the sap from the small green
berries. The adult bug overwinters in the adult stage and is present in berry
1 patches at blooming time.
Contrgh Fairly good control of this insect on other crops has been secured
with 5% DDT dust applied at the rate of 30 pounds per acre. Chlordan by itself
is ineffective but mixed dusts containing 10% chlordan and 5% DDT have given
control superior to that obtained with DDT alone. Other materials which have
given good control of plant bugs in experimental tests in other states are 2 /2
parathion, 20% chlorinated camphene and benzene hexachloride (3% gamma isomer
White sasl;
Injury. Plants wilt suddenly and die. Digging shows large white grubs
(Fig. 9) of l\/lay beetles have eaten off the large roots or gouged out the crowns
(Fig. 8). .
Qontrci. Grow a cultivated crop for at least 2 years before setting
strawberries. Plants set on land infested with grubs can be protected from
attack by putting 1-1/Z ounces of a mixture of 1 part of lead arsenate and 20 ·
parts of fine, dry sand on the roots and in each hole when plants are set. When
plants are found wilted because of grub attack, dig out the grubs and destroy
them before they can move to other plants.
lnjjgirh Folded leaves turn brown and clie. Damage caused by a small
green larva.
Control If severe damage has been caused to new plantings, spray or 3 
dust three times at weekly intervals in the fall to destroy the overwintering
population. Use a cryolite dust made of 1 part cryolite, 2 parts talc, and Z
parts of flour; or spray with 3 pounds of lead arsenate in 100 gallons of water;
or spray with 5 pounds of cryolitein 100 gallons of water, using some good *
spreader, If treatment is delayed until spring, treat before blossom time.
lijury. Newly—set plants are cut off at or just below the ground
Qgntrol, Use poison bait prepared from 1 pound paris green mixed
with Z5 pounds of bran. Add just enough water to moisten all the particles
but not enough to’make the mash sloppy, Scatter the bait evenly over the
patch at dusk, using 10 to 15 pounds per acre.

 Y.; Q
.; 7
W. D Armstrong
The red stele root rot disease has long been a serious problem in the
strawberry producing sections of Illinois, New jersey, and a number of other
states. Kentucky growers have been very fortunate in that losses from this
disease have been relatively light, to date. The writer first saw the disease in
an Aroma patch near Paducah in the spring of 1939. Another strawberry crop
was planted on this sarne field in 1944 and was again virtually ruined by red
stele in 1945. It was seen in a few other berry fields in the Paducah section and
I at Lexington in 1947 and it is suspected to be spread more generally than is
realized. In 1948 additional evidence of the disease causing injury around
Louisville and Covington was seen.
The disease is caused by a fungus that thrives in poorly drained soils
and causes most injury in cool, wet seasons. The disease is often carried to
1 the new field on the roots of the newly set plants and can be spread by surface
water run~off, as well as by cultivation tools that have been used in diseased
spots. If set in high, well —drained soil, infected plants mg develop healthy
‘ runner plants and grow into a productive field. However, if the soil is low,
poorly drained or of a tight, wet nature or if a wet, cool spring follows, the new
i patch may grow nicely the first season and then go to pieces early the following
Q spring The disease is inactive during the warm part of the year. Hence, in-
] fected patches often arc- vigorous and liealtliy looking during the suninier. This
  condition prevailed in a three-acre ficlcl of Blakenwores in the Pac1ucah—l{evi1
section in 1947 and the entire crop was lost except. on a high ridge down the
center of the field.
Symptoms: The trouble usually becomes noticeable just before harvest.
The sympt_o_rris_a_1Te low, small, light foliage that often wilts as the berries try
to ripen. These symptoms usually occur first in the lower parts of fields. in
little draws. dips or depressions. Most of the foliage scorches on seriously
infected plants and the berries do not mature or are seedy and of very low
quality. I\/lost of the infected plants continue to lose vigor and die out. The
disease can be identified easiest by carefully digging suspected plants and
splitting the roots lengthwise. In diseased plants the central core (or stele) of
the roots is a dark red or copper color. This corresponds to the appearance
of the lead in a pencil split lengthwise.
Control measures: At present the best control seems to be to avoid the
disease, if possible, This can be done, to a large extent by setting only clean
plants that have come from inspected fields. Use higher, well-drained soil
V as far as possible, especially after the disease has become established on the l
farm. Setting berry plants on small ridges has proven helpful in infected areas. _
Lay out the berry rows so as to encourage good surface water drainage but,
of course, still attempt to reduce erosion. Keep new settings of berries out of
infected fields for at least five years, since the disease remains in the soil for

 L -°
an unknown length of time. The use of resistant varieties would be an ideal I
control measure; however, to date, we know of no satisfactory shipping berry that
. is resistant to the trouble. The United States Department of Agriculture and
several state experiment stations are attempting to breed new varieties that are
resistant. The Temple and Fairland varieties seem fairly resistant to red stele
and are doing nicely in several infected areas in other states but little is known,
- to date, of their behavior in Kentucky. However, they both showed promise in
1948 and many more fruiting tests will be observed in 1949. Where tried, these
varieties seem to be satisfactory for local markets and processing but too soft
for a dependable shipping variety. Much testing of resistant seedlings and new
sorts is scheduled for Kentucky the coming season, as well as possibly some
breeding work.
The presence of this disease in a section (as it is known to be started
around Paducah, Louisville and northern Kentucky) makes it more important
than ever to use only inspected plants for setting. Several growers are known '
to have brought the disease onto their farms by digging plants from a neighbor‘s
infected field. It will take the cooperation of all growers in a section to keep this `
disease from seriously crippling the industry. This is especially true in sections
of western Kentucky and elsewhere where much of the soil devoted to strawberry
growing is rather tight and poorly drained. .
This is a disease condition that causes the foliage of the Blakemore variety
to be yellowish and mottled. The disease spreads only from mother plant to
daughter plant and does not spread to other varieties. Where yellows is
present, fewer runner plants are made and these produce less fruit than normal
green plants.
Qontng: When Blakemore plants are bought, insist on yellows-free plants. ·  
Wheniyellow plants are seen in the field they should be dug an-cT—c-g.sTi‘—o_yed to
prevent an increase. Thus, by carefully roguing, most Blakemore plantings can
be kept fairly clear of this trouble.
· This disease is fairly new in Kentucky. Its symptoms are varied and
often obscure; hence, it is hard to combat. It is spread from plant to plant by
a white aphid. So far, this aphid has not been found or reported in Kentucky.
Plants with the disease have been located in Kentucky, but these had been
shipped into the state from one of the middle Atlantic states where the disease
is very prevalent in many nurseries. The runner plants from diseased plants
· are also diseased, and setting such plants is a sure way to get the disease _
started on your place.
Syiripjpmsz This disease shows up in different ways in different varieties.
Some diseased varieties have low foliage with small leaves or the leaves may
be cupped. Also, when infected, some varieties fail to produce any, or only a

 » O1
.g 9
few, runners. In other varieties the symptoms are very hard to detect. The
symptoms become more pronounced the second year, Diseased plantings are
generally non-thrifty and low producing. The disease does not live over in the
A_v_oidin_g Ehe disease: ln order to avoid the disease, one should set plants
only from fields thaf—ar_e_known to be very vigorous, productive and heahhy and,
in general, do not get plants from a territory known to be infected with the dis-
ease and the aphid that carries the disease. Hence, the use of disease-free,
Kentucky-grown plants should offer an excellent nieans of avoiding this very
serious trouble.
W. D. Armstrong
During the last few seasons, the Tennessee Shipper and Tennessee Beauty
have been the most outstanding new varieties under experimental test, both
at Lexington and at Princeton. ln general, at both locations, yields of the
. Tennessee Beauty have been highest among the commercial shipping type
A varieties. The firm fruit of these two varieties carries well to nearby or
distant markets and handles well under refrigeration.
1947 yields at the Kentucky Experiment Station at Lexington were as
, follows, in 24 quart crates per acre. Tennessee Beauty - 245; Premier - 172.;
’_ Tennessee Shipper - 154; and Blakemore - 145. Aromas do poorly indeed
_ at Lexington; so, they have been left out of more recent tests there
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if}   Fig. 7 — Strawberry roots _
J affected with the red stele .  
A root disease.
A. - Diseased roots showing
F_ 6 dead, discolored tip
lg' A- ends; upper portion of
roots not discolored.
A. — Normal strawberry plant;
B,. - Diseased roots split
Br. - lant affected with red stele len thwise to show red-
root disease. ‘ dened central portion.
Note the absence of small feeding A C. - Normal roots split len-
roots in B, as compared with the gthwise to show absence
normal root system. of red center. (All
slightly enlarged.)

   SCINEIHJ. ALEUHVA Aaaelumvals
A _ 11 A
_ _ly1_e_£_1La_rii_c_al_s_e2Ln_gi ln 1946 and 1947 Lester Harris of Kevil, Kentucky, Set
his strawberry field with a tobacco setting machine with excellent results and a
great saving of time.
Renovation: This same grower also is using his tractor with hydrolic-
controlled0’mTng device to work out his strawberry fields after harvest. This
was done at a great saving of time and results were entirely satisfactory. By
adjusting the tiller so that two teeth run in each middle and by making a round
trip to each row, it was not necessary to remove any of the mulch from the
middles before starting operations. Here again best results were obtained
when the work was done immediately after harvest. However, where the work
was delayed until grass and weeds had grown considerably, the tractor—til1er
still worked nicely. At that stage, work with a horse or mule and single·row
cultivation equipment was very, very slow and difficult. There was no special
1 attempt with the tractor-tiller to narrow the fruiting row of plants. However,
this operation took out excess berry plants, weeds and grass and the hard
middles were softened up so that row cultivation the remainder of the season
could be easily done.
Fall setting: Some recently reported research work from New York
  shows that for several years strawberry plants set in late October or early
November have produced more satisfactorily than spring set plants, The fall
set plants had to be mulched after setting but, in the spring, they grew off
_ earlier and made more satisfactory fruiting rows. Some work along this line
is planned for our state. ;
  W. D. /\r1r1st.rong
Cooperative mulching tests made with commercial strawberry growers
and started in 1938 indicate that 3 out of 4 years‘ fall mulching of strawberries
will pay a handsome profit over spring mulching. For the 9-year period, fall
mulching has produced an average of 30 crates per acre more than spring
mulching. The greatest increase was 80 crates per acre, in the spring of
1940, following a period when temperatures went to 100 and 120 below zero
with no snow on the ground. As a result of that cold period, many non-mulched
plants were killed or the crown and roots were so badly injured that very low
production resulted. In February and early March of 1947 the near -zero
temperatures resulted in much crown and root injury to non~mulched straw-
berries over the entire state.
SUGGESTIONS: ln order to prevent infesting the fields with rye, wheat,
or cheat, it is suggested that the baled straw be taken to the patch in October 2
or early November and the wires clipped so that the straw will soak up the
fall rains and germinate any grain before spreading. This straw is then
V ready to spread in late November or early December when it seems that the
temperature will go down to 150 to 200. These dates vary and may be later
in southern Kentucky and earlier in the northern portion. One and one -half
tons of straw per acre seem about right for the Purchase Area, with about 2
1 tons around Henderson, Greenville, and Bowling Green, and from Z to 2- l/2
tons per acre around Louisville and Covington.

  . M   V
The Blakemore variety still represents 65% of the strawberries grown in
Kentucky. We find a gradual increase in acreage in both the Tennessee Beauty
and the Tennessee Shipper variety. lt has not been the policy to push these two
newer varieties, but simply get strawberry growers to give them a trial, alongside
their Aroma, Blakemore, or Premier. On most farms where they have been given
a fair demonstration trial, they have already established themselves.
The Tennessee Beauty variety is rapidly replacing the Aroma as a late
and heavy producing variety Sales agencies who sell our commercial berry
production of Kentucky continue to speak well of both varieties, especially concern-
ing their ability tc reach the market in a sound and attractive condition and hold
up well in the grocery stores.
The banner yield on an acre for l948 was 452 twenty—four quart crates of
the Tennessee Beauty. They were produced on good land that had received a l
liberal application of fertilizer, and rye and vetch had been turned under.
ln the Louisville and Covington Strawberry areas of Kentucky, both of the `
Tennessee varieties have been heavier planted than in other parts of the state.
With a shortage of berry pickers, the ability of these two new berry varieties to
hold in good condition, even three or four days between pickings, has stimulated
the planting of both varieties.
The Tennessee Supreme variety has been discarded as being too soft
to ship.
W. W. l\/lagill
Strawberries naturally follow tobacco in the crop rotation in Kentucky.
The good prices received for tobacco during the past few years, together with a
limited tobacco base on many farms have greatly influenced the production
methods of tobacco in an effort to get a high yield of good quality tobacco.
The liberal use of farm manure, heavy application of fertilizer (1,000 to
2,000 pounds per acre) with a fall and winter cover crop of rye and vetch, to be
turned under late in the spring, has been used on many tobacco fields. We find
that such a treatment for tobacco production for a few years results in developing
an excellent field for strawberries.
Superphosphate in liberal application to the strawberry field helps to
increase the yield

   c VI j
r 13
To get the new berry planting off with a good vigorous growth and early
runner formation, many growers apply from 500 to 800 pounds per acre of a complete,
iigh grade fertilizer, drilled or broadcast just ahead of or soon after planting then
luring january or February broadcast an additional 500 to 1000 pounds of 20%
»uperphosphate directly on top of the mulch,
During late April and early May the strawberry plant produces masses of
ender white rootlets at or near the ground level and which seem to "grab" this
uperphosphate that has washed through the straw mulch and remains on top of the
oil, Although the strawberry is not considered a grain crop, we must rernember
hat there are hundreds of seeds on the surface of a strawberry, thus, it is a grain
l ¤r seed crop. We should also consider the fact that a strawberry changes from a
j eedy mass l/4 inch in diameter to a plump, ripe berry (probably one inch or more
in diameter) all within three to five days' time, and in order to make a large berry,
roperly developed and of a uniform texture, an abundance of quick acting phosphate
fertilizer is needed,
i In jefferson County in 1948, where 500 pounds of superphosphate per acre
was broadcast in February, on the matted row, we received an increase of 50
V crates per acre, and where 1000 pounds per acre was broadcast it increased the
. yield 100 crates per acre,

W. W. l\/lagill
A puff of 3% chlordan dust on each plant of strawberries that showed an
attack of ants (aphis on the berry plant roots) apparently gave satisfactory control,
according to ]. H. Miller, County Agent, Marshall County, Kentucky, who conducted
the trial demonstration during the early growing season (june) of 1948 in a newly
planted berry field. Mr. Miller reports an outstanding contrast in new runner
formation where the dust was applied on affected plants.
These berry fields we have allowed to stand through the third or even
the fourth and fifth picking year have paved the way for crown borer development _
on many farms. Keep in mind that crown borer can be "prevented" without any
cost, but it cannot be "controlled" once it gets a start in a berry field.
Lgredigt I
That 1949 will be an excellent year to plant an acre or more of
strawberries. That strawberry prices will continue good for a few years. That
the Kentucky acreage of Tennessee Shipper and Tennessee Beauty of straw-
berries will gradually increase. That the berry growers who apply from 1.000
to 1,500 pounds of superphosphate per acre will make 400% on the money he
pays for this superphosphate. That strawberries will continue to "pay off" as
well or better per acre than burley tobacco.