b'Turning Back The ClockA Look Back 25 Years Ago at Excerpts fromThe April 1994 Issue ofThe ValleyPotato Grower MagazineManage Disease For A cost, that protection is a very minis- for fresh or processing markets, orBetter Bottom Line cule factor in the overall input cost for next years seed market.peracre,saysDr.SteveJohnson,In a lab next to his North Dakota Plant Pathologist at the University Our success, says Bogestad, whoseStateUniversityoffice,Plant ofMaineCooperativeExtension. farm sells pre-cut and treated seedPathologist Dr. Gary Secor studies a Andwhencalculatingyieldand potatoes to as far away as Hawaii,tray of seed potatoes. If you could qualityfactorsthatresultfrom isdependentonprotectingourplanttheseinperfectconditions, usingaqualityseed-piecetreat- customers crops. Were in the cut,youd never need a seed-piece treat- ment, it is a good quality assurance treat and plant business. Our wholement. However, perfect conditions program for very little cost. operation is based on that philoso-never happen. phy, he adds.InnearbyDonaldson,Minnesota, When we cut and treat seed-pieces,RogerBogestad,PresidentofJohn up to five semi-loads a day, theyllBogestad & Son Farms, Inc.discuss- hit the soil within 24 hours. If a raines the necessity of yield and quality. halts potato planting, we stop cut-Theprocessgrowersalwaystell ting and treating. We must protectyouhowimportantqualityisfor against seed-piece decay, so we livetheirspuds.Forusseedgrowers, by this rule to optimize protectionquality is paramount. Weve got to delivered by TOPSproducts.harvest and transport potatoes intostorage, making sure seed stays dis- Thetwo-stepprotectionandheal-ease-free until sold to process grow- ing process begins as the seed-pieceers in May. Plus, we plant and sell iscut.First,theoutercutsurfaceeightseedpotatovarietiesnation- begins to suberizein the first twowide, he says. or three cell layers. Once suberiza-Cut, Treat, Plant tion takes place, then the cut sur-To maintain their high quality stan- Potatoseed-piecesthataretreated facecanbegintoformawounddards,Bogestadsays,Iwouldnt to heal quickly after being cut, and periderm, or new skin that protectseven think of planting seed-pieces planted within 24 hours, can sup- like normal potato skin.withoutprotectingthemfrom port the daughter plant for the firstFusarium. When you cut, treat, and four to six weeks of life. By practic- The current standard in this areaplant, seed-piece treatments are the ingthiscut-treat-plantregimen, forprotectingseed-piecesfromonly protection you have. growerscansignificantlyimprove pathogensduringthistwo-stepprofitmarginpotentialatharvest, processisTOPSforGustafson.Consideringseed-piecetreatment whether growers are raising tubers This seed-piece treatment prevents20 POTATO GROWER APRIL 2019'