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Wisconsin State Cranberry Growers Association / Wisconsin State Cranberry Growers' Association. Thirty-first annual meeting, Grand Rapids, Wisconsin, January 8, 1918. Thirtieth summer meeting, pavilion, Nekoose, Wis., August 14, 1917
(1917-1918)

Chaney, A. U.
Observations and suggestions,   pp. 21-22 PDF (461.2 KB)


Page 21


OBSERVATIONS AND SUGGESTIONS
By A. U. CHANEY
FIGHTING THE VIRE WORM
Wisconsin seems to have suffered unusual damage from this pest
last season. Probably the cold summer was the cause of the eggs
hatching so irregularly that repeated floodings seemed necessary.
These repeated floodings greatly reduced and often destroyed the crops.
For a number of years the New Jersey growers have suffered severe
ravages of the fire worm. The New Jersey growers. Mr. Scammell
and other government experts, have tried many experiments. Some of
them seem to have proven very successful. During last season I made
diligent inquiry as to methods and results. Mr. Scammll seems to
have proven the nicotine, mixed one gallon to seven or eight hundred
gallons of water and sprayed at the proper time, Is very effective.
When the fire worm appears in the blossoming, period, or after the
firuit is set, flooding is very likely to injure or destroy the crop,
whereas spraying with nicotine greatly retards the fire worm damage
and very frequently totally destroys them. Mr. White, Mr. Harrison.
Mr. Holman and other well-known growers have proven that by spray-
ing at these times they often save at least one-half of the crop, where-
as the flooding at that dangerous period would totally destroy it.
This nicotine is a contact poison, known as "Black Leaf 40" and
is
much more effective than food poison, such as krsenate of lead, Paris
green, etc. It is sold by the Tobacco Products Company of Louisville,
Ky., and costs about $10.00 per gallon; but using only one gallon to
eight hundred gallons of water does not make it expensive.
Two sprayings are often advisable, and the sprayings should be
two or three days apart, as it is strictly contact poison. That which
appears to have been the most successful remedy is about as follows:
In the spring, before taking the water off lower the head so that
the vines are just barely covered with water. This shallow flooding
will help to warm the soil and give the vines an opportunity for an
early start. Then at about the usual time take the water off and leave
it off from three to five weeks watching very closely for the fire worm
to appear. After they have appeared pretty generally over the bog
and most of the eggs have apparently hatched, reflood, covering every-
thing with water and keeping it under water five days. Make a kero-
sene torch with a gas pipe or tubular handle to hold the oil fuel and
wade over the bog, or go over it with boats, and burn everything that
sticks over the water, such as high vines, grasses or weeds, giving
the worms no opportunity to crawl above the water and live. Some
suggest that cutting off these grasses or weeds that stick above the
water and letting them fall into the water will accomplish the same
results. This method seems to have effectively destroyed the fire
21


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