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UK: Growers could save money with varieties resistant to late blight

Growers of conventional potatoes could save money by growing late-blight-resistant varieties rather than relying on regular spraying, Sarvari Research Trust director David Shaw said at an open day earlier this month. The trust has recently stepped up efforts to commercialise the Sarpo varieties for which it owns the rights, though chiefly to the home gardener. But Shaw said: “Big growers say ‘blight’s not a problem, we just spray once a week’, but it costs £72m to control in a wet year. Sarpo varieties are also virus-resistant and vigorous, so weed-smothering – useful if you don’t want to use herbicide.”

Source: www.hortweek.com

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