Dutch lead the way in potato cyst nematode control

Potato nematodes are now a minor pest threat in the Netherlands and one Dutch expert believes British potato growers could learn lessons from their success. Growing potatoes as a trap crop for potato cyst nematodes (PCN), using resistant varieties and rigorous testing for the industry’s most damaging pest have all led to better control. Dutch growers use more robust sampling than British growers, and their system takes GPS-recorded samples from 6m strips in the direction of cultivation to account for the direction of redistribution of the pest in the soil. The sampling rate is 5.5/ha with 60-64 cores in each bulk sample and this can give detailed accurate maps of PCN populations. More