The biological control product, Eco-77 (T-77, Trichoderma atroviride strain 77B -previously known as Trichoderma harzianum 77B) is a beneficial fungus that colonizes wounded plant tissue and protects it from pathogenic organisms such as Botrytis. Trial results show that Eco-77 (T-77) is effective at suppressing Botrytis incidence in table grapes.
What is Botrytis?
Botrytis is caused by the fungus Botrytis cinerea, affecting a number of plant species including tomatoes, strawberries and grapes. Fruits infected with Botrytis develop a soft rot with a brown mould on the fruit surface. Symptoms can occur both in the field and most notably during post-harvest. It is important to manage this disease during the crop cycle to decrease post-harvest spoilage. Chemical fungicides have traditionally been used for Botrytis management, however with resistance and more stringent residue controls, biocontrol methods have become increasingly popular for the management of this disease.
Through independent trial consultants, Plant Health Products and Madumbi Sustainable Agriculture have conducted research into the management of Botrytis on table grapes using Eco-77 (T-77, Trichoderma atroviride strain 77B). Efficacy trials with Eco-77 (T-77) compared to a standard chemical fungicide, were conducted in the Western and Northern Cape regions of South Africa. For suppression of Botrytis on table grapes, Eco-77 (T-77) was applied at a rate of 250 g/Ha and the standard fungicides were applied according to label recommendations. The generally accepted treatment protocol for Botrytis was followed, with first application at flowering, second at peaberry stage (just prior to bunch closure), third at veraison (ripening) stage and a final application seven days before harvest.
The results of these trials show that Eco-77 (T-77) is effective at suppressing Botrytis incidence on table grapes. Eco-77 offers an effective, residue-free solution to Botrytis management in this crop.