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New Zealand Plant Protection 66 (2013): 303-307

Evaluation of three models for predicting Venturia inaequalis ascospore release in Southern Brazil

S.A.M. Alves and R.M. Beresford

ABSTRACT

Ascospores of Venturia inaequalis constitute the principal source of primary inoculum for epidemics of apple black spot (scab). Mathematical models that describe ascospore release have been developed in USA, New Zealand and Italy. These models are based upon degree-day accumulation. In this work, the seasonal pattern of released ascospores of V. inaequalis in Vacaria, Brazil, was evaluated. During four apple growth seasons (2009 to 2012) the natural release of ascospores from five orchards was recorded. The cumulative percentage of ascospore release was predicted using three different degree-day models. The released ascospore data showed the best fit to the model developed in Italy, with a start date of 22 August rather than the phenological stage of apple bud break. It is concluded that in regions with warm winter temperatures, models that use bud break to initiate ascospore maturation will tend to underestimate availability of ascospores at the beginning of the apple growth season.

Keywords: Venturia inaequalis, epidemiology, apple scab, Malus domestica.

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