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Beneficials Outnumber Pathogens

Early symptoms of fire blight in a Liberty apple tree. The branch is just starting to make the shepherd’s crook and to blacken. Photo by C.J. Walke

Early symptoms of fire blight in a Liberty apple tree. The branch is just starting to make the shepherd’s crook and to blacken. Photo by C.J. Walke

January 23, 2020

In his article “Biological Control of Fireblight Bacteria,” MOFGA’s C.J. Walke says that it is important to recognize that pests and pathogens evolve over time to develop and build resistance to commonly used materials, so having multiple options in your so-called “tool box” is part of an effective management strategy. He also highlights the ability of microbes to compete with each other for their own existence, “and although we battle against a handful of microbes on the farm, the beneficial organisms greatly outnumber the pathogens.” Read more in the winter issue of The Maine Organic Farmer & Gardener.

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