Q. What nematodes does MeloCon control?
A. Of the major species of nematodes that attack nut trees, MeloCon controls root knot (Meloidogyne spp.), root lesion (Pratylenchus vulnus), and dagger (Xiphinema americanum) nematodes. MeloCon is not recommended for use to control ring nematode (Mesocriconema xenoplax).
Q. MeloCon is a fungus?
A. Yes, MeloCon contains the spores of the PL251 fungus, which is a virulent parasite of common plant-infecting nematodes. Each gram of MeloCon WDG contains at least 10 billion spores of the PL251 fungus. An application rate of 2 pounds of MeloCon WG per acre is the equivalent of nearly 1.5 million spores per square inch. Once applied to the soil, spores of the fungus adhere to the bodies of nematodes as they move through the soil. The spores germinate and penetrate the nematode, killing it by feeding on the nematode’s body contents. MeloCon is brutal to nematodes and highly effective.
Q. I’m putting in a new orchard of almonds. After I apply MeloCon, I need to water it in?
A. Yes, watering in will help move the spores of MeloCon down to the rhizosphere of the tree’s roots. That’s where the majority of the plant parasitic nematodes are found. Use of a soil wetting agent will also help the spores penetrate soil and get to the root zone. Transplants can be treated just before transplanting with a soil drench to protect the developing root ball from nematodes after planting. Non-fumigated soils should be treated with MeloCon WG two weeks before planting new trees to reduce initial nematode infestation. Application can then be repeated every 6 weeks after planting to keep nematodes suppressed.
Q. Is MeloCon a replacement for methyl bromide?
A. MeloCon does not negate the loss of methyl bromide, but it certainly is a viable option for the control of nematodes. And remember, no fumigant management plans are required with MeloCon. It has a 4-hour REI and zero-day PHI. And it can be used on conventionally grown or organically grown nut trees.