Biological Answer To Blackberries Sought
March 3, 2000 The Rural News
Forests is taking part in a research project to quantify the impact of a
biological control agent, blackberry rust, on blackberry around Tumut and
"Since rust epidemics are determined on climate, an extensive study is being conducted to determine the climatic limitations of rust in Australia:' he said.
"This three-year project, co-ordinated by the Keith Turnbull Research Institute of the Department of Natural Resources in Victoria, will help in the selection of new rust strains from Europe, to further improve the biological control of blackberries in Australia"
blackberry leaf rust is a defoliating disease that attacks blackberry leaves,
making the plant unhealthy and reducing growth and seed production.
Hobson said as part of the project, State Forests is required to record daily
weather details such as rainfall and temperature at a variety of locations in
the forests, as well as establishing a number of blackberry monitoring sites
close to each weather site.
In addition to the monitoring program, State Forests' commenced its annual blackberry-spraying program in early January. Two contractors had been engaged to undertake the spraying work and the spraying program is likely to continue through to April.