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Old June 10, 2016   #1
BigVanVader
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Default Concerns about Copper Fungicide

http://www.regional.org.au/au/asssi/...vanzwieten.htm

This article made me rethink my use of copper. I have a very healthy worm population because I have been feeding the soil for almost 2 years now. I hauled in over 3k pounds of manure last winter, and do so every fall so I certainly dont want to poison my soil with heavy metals and defeat the purpose of doing all that work. Everything I do is based around soil building since that is really the cornerstone of a healthy garden, and since there are several alternatives that work as/more effectively I will no longer use copper fungicide. Not worth the risk for me. To each their own though.
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Old June 10, 2016   #2
PaulF
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A good study indicating that the overuse of any chemical can be harmful. We use fungicides only when necessary and then follow label directions. There are other fungicides rather than copper that work, but used sparingly will not cause the problems incurred as indicated in the study in Australia which was in a commercial orchard setting. Always good to be cautious. Thanks for the reminder.
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Old June 10, 2016   #3
BigVanVader
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Yeah, I hate to even post these sometimes but I personally had no idea copper was a heavy metal that persist in the soi, or that it can create a toxic environment for worms. I doubt I use it enough to cause those issues, but I'm not willing to risk it either.
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Old February 6, 2018   #4
hl2601
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A Newbie question...what would you use instead especially if you wanted to stay organic?
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Old February 6, 2018   #5
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I try to grow organically and have always dealt with Septoria and Early Blight by mulching, removing lower leaves below the first flowers, and then by removing lower leaves as they became infected with fungal disease. I have been tempted to use copper, but I too have been building up the soil and the earthworm population for many years and I don't want to ruin everything for the sake of a few more tomatoes.......

Linda
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Old February 6, 2018   #6
ginger2778
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I can't live without it. Way too much fungal pressure in humid Florida. Serenade is an organic fungicide, but it just doesn't work as well. Of course, I grow in containers and they are soil and earthworm free. That's because of a different kind of worm, nematodes.
And I use my copper spray at 1/2 of the weakest recommended strength. I might think differently if I needed to build the soil.
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Old February 6, 2018   #7
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I'm using Bacillus amyloliquefaciens now. Haven't been using it long enough to give a solid recommendation, but I'm using it exclusively & from the start this year and will know if it works. I'm also growing mostly hybrid commercial types and landrace varieties. I've decided that instead of fighting so hard to keep my weak and disease prone heirloom tomatoes alive I will let nature take its course with only minor help from me. Only the strong survive

https://learningstore.uwex.edu/Assets/pdfs/A4114-03.pdf

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00VXQG23O...a-311792278991
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Old February 7, 2018   #8
sjamesNorway
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In Norway there are no copper fungicides available to hobby gardeners, and professionals must be certified (after taking courses) to use most plant protection products. For hobby gardeners there is one fungicide for gray mold called Teldor Hobby, some pyrethrine insecticides, and another insecticide called Calypso Garden (tiakloprid), which I've only used on raspberry bushes. So I have no alternative but to follow Linda's (Labradors2) tomato plant procedure, "...mulching, removing lower leaves below the first flowers, and then by removing lower leaves as they became infected with fungal disease." So far this has worked very well for me.

Steve

ps: inoculants aren't readily available here, either.

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Old February 7, 2018   #9
hl2601
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Thanks BVV for those links.
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Old February 8, 2018   #10
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Copper in recommended doses is not toxic but as it will stay in the earth concentration can become very high. Bordeaux vineyards have been using it for nearly a century and some have huge problems. If we want to leave a clean earth to our children we should think twice before spraying it as long as other substances are efficient and biodegradable.
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Old February 8, 2018   #11
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Bleach at low concentrations can be effective, see b54red's thread about it. I have used hydrogen peroxide with success, however it is not cost-effective for more than a few plants.

I think a lot of the organic approaches to fungicide have to do with changing the ph on the leaf surface, creating an unfavorable environment for the disease to grow. Diluted milk is one treatment that comes to mind.
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