Syngenta East Africa, the Company that aims developing crop program through innovative solutions, that offer growers plant protection products and also complete crop solutions; continued with the launch of array of their products this time unveiling Solvit fungicide.
The beautiful event was recently held at a Nairobi hotel. Solvit® is a new fungicide against powdery mildew developed for use on rose and ornamentals. The fungicide is a highly effective and long lasting fungicide for control of powdery mildew in flower cultivation.
The activities by Syngenta to address powdery mildew in the flower industry started with an awareness session during the launch. The session entailed a video shown to stakeholders on effects of Powdery mildew on roses, a drama play on roses attacked and not attacked by Powdery mildew, there effects and controls. Several participants including Production and Farm Managers, Plant Pathologist’s, Agronomists among others from across the country attended the launch.
Through structured presentations and highly interactive discussions, the team provided background information on powdery mildew, knowledge on their biology and life cycle. The damages and symptoms caused by powdery mildew were also outlined.
“The symptoms appear on leaves, shoots, buds, thorns, peduncles and flowers. Severe mildew damage reduces leaf growth, aesthetic value of plants, photosynthetic efficiency thereby plant growth as well as salability of cut flowers,” said Dr. Maina Muiru, senior lecturer Department of Plant Science at the University of Nairobi.
Moreover, participants were enlightened on proper detection and sampling of powdery mildew, worthwhile information towards countering frequent misdiagnoses of damage by the disease as nutritional disorders or water stress.
Solutions for management
According to Mr. Ruud Roeven, Technical Service Manager EAME, prevention is the best management a grower needs to start with. “Sanitation is always important, start with disease free plants when planting, and space plants for good air circulation. Avoid excessively application of high nitrogen fertilizers and water the plants correctly. These cultural practices are aimed at alleviating all diseases, powdery mildew being one of them,” said Mr. Ruud Roeven.
“Our recommendation for the powdery mildew challenge is the use of Integrated Pest Management, an approach that focuses on long-term prevention of pests and diseases or their damage through a combination of effective and environmentally sensitive techniques, and minimal use of pesticides. Syngenta has developed Solvit® which is useful to the flower industry, “he added
Solvit® is applied as a foliar mixed with 1000-1500 liters of water/ha to get a complete crop solution control and avoid run-off. It should be applied in higher volume where the crop is dense.
Ms. Margaret Njambi-L&G Technical Manager, Syngenta East Africa stated that Solvit® should be applied at the early stages of disease development. It should be applied at three successive sprays at approximately 5-7 days interval during prolonged or severe attacks.
“We have done trials on 61 varieties of roses in several areas in Kenya; including Naivasha, Kajiado, Nakuru and Mt Kenya region. The results we got are consistent and has been effective in control of powdery mildew, “she said. Solvit® was launched in February 2015 in Netherlands and has been used in 3 countries: Italy, Colombia and Netherlands and it has proved to be very strong on powdery mildew control in roses.
“The positive response from the Kenyan floriculture community, seen in this overwhelming attendance and active participation, provides strong evidence of the interest in these neglected and little understood, yet devastating disease,” said Victor Juma-L&G Business Manager, Syngenta East Africa.
The success of the launch highlighted the resolve and commitment by Syngenta, as a crucial component of improved pest and disease management and environmental protection in Kenya and beyond.