Action thresholds for summer fungicide sprays and sequential classification of apple scab incidence.

Carisse, O., Meloche, C., Boivin, G., and Jobin, T. (2009). "Action thresholds for summer fungicide sprays and sequential classification of apple scab incidence.", Plant Disease, 93(5), pp. 490-498. doi : 10.1094/PDIS-93-5-0490  Access to full text


The objectives of this study were to establish scab incidence thresholds at which summer fungicide sprays should be initiated and to develop sequential sampling for classification plans to facilitate decision making. The relationship between proportion of scabbed leaves per shoot and percent scabbed fruits at harvest was established based on data collected in both experimental and commercial orchards. Action threshold at which fungicide spray program should be initiated in order to maintain fruit scab at harvest below 2% was established at 0.006 scabbed leaves per shoot; hence incidence thresholds of 0.005 and 0.01 scabbed leaves per shoot were evaluated. Sequential sampling for classification procedures (SSCP), using the Wald's sequential probability ratio test (SPRT), were developed based on a beta-binomial distribution and using parameter estimates of the binary power law. Monte Carlo simulations were used to establish the probability of classifying mean scab incidence as less than the action thresholds (pth = 0.005 and pth = 0.01). Operating characteristic (OC) and average sample number (ASN) curves were established for eight combinations of stop lines and error levels (α and β). Based on the results of the Monte Carlo simulations, four sets of stop lines (two for each pth threshold) were selected for further evaluation. Bootstrap simulations of 50 data sets indicated that both the OC and ASN curves for each of the four pairs of stop lines were similar to OC and ASN values determined by Monte Carlo simulation. When validated with data not used to construct the models, the SSCPs provided the appropriate classification in 98 and 95% of the simulations for the pth = 0.005 and pth = 0.01 (α = 0.05 and β = 0.10), respectively. The sequential sampling plans developed in this study should allow for rapid and accurate classification of the incidence of apple scab on leaves, and aid in sampling for summer scab management decision making.

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