Fungicide soak for Japanese flowering apricot? (Or for any prunus?)

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Fungicide soak for Japanese flowering apricot? (Or for any prunus?)

Post  William Feldman on Wed Sep 19, 2012 1:41 am

A recent issue of Bonsai Focus has an article on a Japanese flowering apricot being pruned and repotted. Before they put the tree into its new pot, they removed all the old soil, trimmed back the roots and branches, and submerged the whole tree for several hours in streptomycin-based fungicide. Has anyone tried this? I'd be very interested in hearing about brand names available in the US, along with solution strengths.

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Fungicide Soak

Post  bonsaisr on Wed Sep 19, 2012 2:16 am

Sounds like Dr. Oz (a wildly popular TV snake-oil peddler).
First of all, Streptomycin is an antibiotic, not a fungicide. Antibiotics for plant application, as far as I know, are highly restricted and used only by licensed pesticide applicators. We already have deadly resistant bacteria due to overuse of antibiotics. Last thing we need is amateurs using them in the garden. The only reason I can think of for using streptomycin on a plant is if the plant was priceless and had been specifically diagnosed with a bacterial infection.
If it isn't an antibiotic and they really meant a fungicide, I still would not do it unless the tree had symptoms of a fungal disease. You are only increasing resistant strains of fungus. Fugeddaboutit. No
Iris

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Re: Fungicide soak for Japanese flowering apricot? (Or for any prunus?)

Post  Dave Murphy on Wed Sep 19, 2012 11:42 am

A google search shows that streptomycin is apparently used as a pesticide/anti-fungal and antibiotic in agriculture with applications for use with certain fruits, veggies, and ornamentals...

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Re: Fungicide soak for Japanese flowering apricot? (Or for any prunus?)

Post  Tom on Wed Sep 19, 2012 12:24 pm

bonsaisr wrote: bacterial infection.

Prunus in general are susceptible to bacterial canker (see e.g. http://apps.rhs.org.uk/advicesearch/profile.aspx?pid=86 ). I'm currently trying to control it on a large garden cherry with Bordeaux mixture.

I can understand the use of an antibiotic in that context.

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Post  bonsaisr on Wed Sep 19, 2012 2:17 pm

Dave Murphy wrote:A google search shows that streptomycin is apparently used as a pesticide/anti-fungal and antibiotic in agriculture with applications for use with certain fruits, veggies, and ornamentals...
Is it listed for cherry trees? Is it sold to the public or only to certified pesticide applicators?
Had the flowering apricot in the original article been exposed to infected trees? If you feel you need it, you have to find out what the regulations are in your state or country.
I would like to get Nina's opinion on this.
Another consideration: Our bonsai are very precious to us, and some of them are quite valuable. However, they are still ornamentals. We should not be using pesticides in a way that might compromise the health of our food crops or the effectiveness of medications.
Iris

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Re: Fungicide soak for Japanese flowering apricot? (Or for any prunus?)

Post  JimLewis on Wed Sep 19, 2012 3:49 pm

Some folks take "Better Living Through Chemistry" to a dangerous extreme.

_________________
Jim Lewis - lewisjk@windstream.net - Western NC - People, when Columbus discovered this country, it was plumb full of nuts and berries. And I'm right here to tell you the berries are just about all gone. Uncle Dave Macon, old-time country musician

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Re: Fungicide soak for Japanese flowering apricot? (Or for any prunus?)

Post  Dave Murphy on Wed Sep 19, 2012 6:21 pm

bonsaisr wrote:
Dave Murphy wrote:A google search shows that streptomycin is apparently used as a pesticide/anti-fungal and antibiotic in agriculture with applications for use with certain fruits, veggies, and ornamentals...
Is it listed for cherry trees? Is it sold to the public or only to certified pesticide applicators?
Had the flowering apricot in the original article been exposed to infected trees? If you feel you need it, you have to find out what the regulations are in your state or country.
I would like to get Nina's opinion on this.
Another consideration: Our bonsai are very precious to us, and some of them are quite valuable. However, they are still ornamentals. We should not be using pesticides in a way that might compromise the health of our food crops or the effectiveness of medications.
Iris

I'm not advocating it's use. I'm merely pointing out that it is not just an antibacterial agent, and that it does have potential antifungal applications in horticulture. The original poster must decide if it's use is approriate for him.

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Re: Fungicide soak for Japanese flowering apricot? (Or for any prunus?)

Post  Leo Schordje on Wed Sep 19, 2012 8:18 pm

In principle I agree with Iris and Jim on the need to avoid over use of antibiotics in order to avoid the situation I personally ran into several years ago. I was laid up for 4 weeks with a potentially disfiguring with some potential to turn lethal case of MRSA. I ended up on an IV drip in a quarantine room at our local hospital. So please take their warning to heart. Multi-drug resistance is no joke. Though the big offenders are the meat industries, and the medical industry itself, horticultural over use of antibiotics is a potential contributor to the problem.

That said.

If you feel your tree really is infected with a bacteria:
An off label source of both gram positive and gram negative antibiotics that are water soluble would be your local aquarium supply store. The dilutions meant for fresh water tropical fish would be harmless to your trees. This dose may be below the effective dose for cherry bacterial canker, but one could search to find out what the right dose would be and do the math.

Most bacteria and fungi can be avoided by good cultural conditions, proper site location. Good sun, good air movement, and a soil that breaths would lessen the risk of having to deal with these issues. There is a danger these chemicals would kill of mycorhizae. Try to avoid use of the chemical if at all possible.


Last edited by Leo Schordje on Wed Sep 26, 2012 4:33 am; edited 1 time in total

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Re: Fungicide soak for Japanese flowering apricot? (Or for any prunus?)

Post  Oliver Muscio on Wed Sep 19, 2012 10:17 pm

bonsaisr wrote: Is it sold to the public or only to certified pesticide applicators?
Iris
FWIW, Streptomycin has also been recommended as preventative treatment for fireblight on apples, etc. (a sever bacterial infection), and is sold in Kentucky for certain tobacco diseases (of the plant, not people). I don't know if it is actually approved for use on apple trees, but I am pretty sure it is/was for use on tobacco plants, its main application here. I bought some for my apple trees quite a few years ago, and I was not asked for certification then, but regulations may have since changed. I am still fighting fireblight, but haven't used the steptomycin in quite a few years. By the way, I understand it can provoke an allergic reaction in some people, one more good reason to be careful.
Oliver

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Re: Fungicide soak for Japanese flowering apricot? (Or for any prunus?)

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