U.S. fire blight management workshops and webinar series

A national team of tree fruit pathology researchers are presenting a fire blight management webinar series. All apple growers are encouraged to attend this free educational multi-date program.

Brown withered leaves of an apple tree infected with fire blight.
Photo by Mark Longstroth, MSU Extension

The first year of a four-year project, Comprehensive Fire Blight Management for the United States, has been completed, and the team is inviting apple producers to hear the latest results. Researchers will host two meetings in spring 2023: Wenatchee, Washington, on Feb. 23 and Traverse City, Michigan, on March 1. These meetings will be held in person and online, and we welcome participation from U.S. apple growers through both delivery methods. Researchers are also offering a webinar series starting in December 2022 that runs through October 2023.

At these meetings, researchers will present information about fire blight basics, including sustainable management practices to protect apples against this disease. We will also cover how to best use bloom infection prevention strategies with traditional antibiotics. Researchers will review antibiotic resistance and present new results on the nationwide efficacy trial results with biopesticides.

There has also been new information on strategies to use prohexadione-calcium products and plant growth regulators (PGRs) to reduce shoot blight and how apple trees respond to Actigard/Apogee and other inducers. The team will also present information on how to manage fire blight infections with pruning and sanitation.

The meetings will have researchers from Michigan State University, University of Illinois, University of California-Riverside, Cornell University, Washington State University, North Carolina State University and Oregon State University in person and online for presentations.

The Washington workshop will be held on Feb. 23, 2023, at the Confluence Technology Center, 285 Technology Center Way, Wenatchee, WA 98801 from 9 a.m. – 3 p.m.

View the agenda and register for the Washington event (in-person or online)

The Michigan workshop will be held on March 1, 2023, at the Northwest Michigan Horticultural Research Center, 6686 S. Center Highway, Traverse City, MI 49684, from 9 a.m. – 2:30 p.m. Lunch will be included.

View the agenda and register for the Michigan event (in-person or online)

The webinar series will begin in December 2022 and run through October 2023. This series will address new research on best management practices for fire blight control. Growers are encouraged to attend this online-only event by registering at this link:

Register for the Fire Blight Webinar Series

The following is the upcoming fire blight webinar series agenda: 

Dec. 12, 2022 - Using models to predict fire bight infections: MaryBlyt and Cougar Blight

Presenter: Kerik Cox, Cornell University, and Tianna DuPont, Washington State University 

March 15, 2023 - Using biopesticides to help control fire blight

Presenter: Ken Johnson, Oregon State University

June 13, 2023 - Pruning and sanitation strategies to reduce fire blight

Presenter: Tianna DuPont, Washington State University 

Oct. 18, 2023 - Using weather and environmental conditions to optimize biologicals and biopesticides for bloom production

Presenter: Sara Villani, North Carolina State University         

These online meetings will last approximately one hour beginning at 7 p.m. ET. Michigan growers will receive one credit for each of the meetings.

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