The goal for today’s alfalfa grower is to get the most out of every acre by maintaining a healthy stand and maximizing yield and quality. However, some diseases can prove challenging to reach those goals. Alfalfa diseases like leaf spots and stem diseases can cause a loss of lower leaves that directly correlate to reduced yield and quality.
There are about 18 million acres of alfalfa and many of them receive one or more fungicide applications per year. By using a strobilurin fungicide like AZteroid FC 3.3 from Vive Crop Protection, alfalfa growers have earned higher yield, increased retention of lower leaves, quicker green up following a cutting, higher stem counts and increased longevity from a planting.
The benefits of strobilurin fungicides are documented in a 5-year study conducted by Iowa State University (2012-2016). The study showed a positive economic response to fungicide applications every time it was applied to first cutting.
Over the five years, alfalfa yield increased by an average of 9.7 percent for the first cutting. Fluctuation did happen throughout the study with some years being higher than others. This was attributed to increased disease pressure in some years which helped the fungicide perform to its fullest potential compared to untreated.
The Health Benefit of AZteroid FC 3.3
Unlike other strobilurin fungicides, AZteroid FC 3.3 is systemic in the plant. This provides better long-term benefit by protecting new growth from disease. The active ingredient powering AZteroid FC 3.3, azoxystrobin, has proven plant health benefits such as increased leaf retention, quicker green up and higher stem counts.
Compared to other strobilurin on the market, AZteroid FC 3.3 mixes more seamlessly with fertilizers, integrating easily into a foliar feeding program so alfalfa growers can get the benefits of both a systemic fungicide and fertilizer in the same application. It also mixes well with hard water and insecticides. But keep in mind that a jar test is always recommended.
How AZteroid FC 3.3 works to improve plant health:
Increased drought tolerance by lowering transpiration rates in the plant
Plants stay greener longer due to decreased ethylene production, enhancing plant growth and leaf retention.
Increase nitrogen use efficiency by increasing nitrate reductase which make nitrates more readily available for plants to use to produce essential proteins
Improved CO2 efficiency results in increased photosynthesis
AZteroid FC 3.3 should be applied at 6-8” of growth at a rate of 4 fl. oz/ac. and a 14-day pre-harvest interval. Always follow label directions carefully.
The AZteroid FC 3.3 Difference
Alfalfa grower Chay Yund was going to plow up many fields of alfalfa in 2018 because of winterkill. Instead, he decided to use AZteroid FC 3.3 in a “Hail Mary” attempt to keep his stand alive.
He said, “Oh man, plowing it up would have been a huge mistake. I had the best crop in the worst year on record.”
Hear his story: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mx9LLz_1BAQ