As the grape season wrapped up in 2018, county agents from Habersham, Lumpkin, Rabun, Towns and White Counties were busy collecting powdery mildew samples for a new multi-state USDA-SCRI grant, the “Fungicide Resistance Assessment, Mitigation and Extension Network for Wine, Table and Raisin Grapes,” also known as FRAME. This grant will study powdery mildew resistance to fungicides over the next four years — providing extensive and valuable information for grape producers in participating states. See below for a list of the participating institutions in the FRAME Project Acknowledgement Slide. We will soon be contacting grape producers to request your participation in some of these studies. The initial survey results are also found below (2018 Georgia Powdery Mildew Resistance Map). Each dot represents a vineyard in the participating counties, but specific vineyards are not indicated. The bottom line is that powdery mildew is often resistant to the QoI fungicides. We have also recently confirmed extensive resistance of the downy mildew pathogen to this same fungicide class. As a result, it is doubtful that these fungicides will be of value for disease management in most Georgia vineyards. We will be discussing fungicide and resistance-management options in detail at meetings this winter. We look forward to working with our Georgia wine grape producers to develop better management programs as we move forward in 2019.
Phil Brannen is a Professor in the Plant Pathology Department at the University of Georgia. He attended the University of Georgia for his undergraduate degree in Plant Protection and Pest Management, where he also received an M.S. in Plant Pathology, followed by a Ph.D. in Plant Pathology from Auburn University. He has extensive experience with disease management programs in numerous cropping systems. He serves as the extension fruit pathologist for Georgia – conducting research and technology transfer for multiple fruit commodities. His efforts are directed towards developing IPM practices to solve disease issues and technology transfer of disease-management methods to commercial fruit producers. He also teaches the graduate level Field Pathology Course, the History of Plant Diseases and their Impact on Human Societies Course, team-teaches the IPM Course, coordinates the Viticulture and Enology in the Mediterranean Region Course (Cortona, Italy), and guest lectures in numerous other courses throughout the year.