With Ted Labun
For the past 40 years, Ted Labun has been one of Syngenta Canada’s go-to people when it comes to managing pests with crop protection products. Now, as Seedcare Technical Lead for Western Canada, Labun works closely with clients like BrettYoung to introduce new products and provide training on how to use these products effectively.
Even after four decades on the job, Labun still marvels at some of the advances that have been made in pest management, particularly when it comes to canola.
“In terms of innovation with canola pest management, we’ve come a long, long way since I started [in Seedcare] 21 years ago,” he says. “The seed treatment innovation that I’ve seen has been tremendous, both from a disease point of view and an insect point of view. It’s really helped to protect that extremely valuable seed that we’re planting.”
Two of Syngenta’s latest innovations in seed treatment products for canola are Helix® Saltro, which serves as the standard base treatment for all BrettYoung canola varieties, and Fortenza® Advanced, a powerful additional treatment option. Both protection packages offer advanced safeguards against a wide range of pathogens and pests.
The Helix brand has been around since 2001, with Helix Saltro as the latest iteration following its predecessors Helix XTra® and Helix Vibrance®. What makes it unique is a fungicidal active ingredient that protects against airborne Blackleg. It also delivers the same level of protection as Helix Vibrance® against striped and crucifer flea beetles, Rhizoctonia, Fusarium and Pythium.
“What makes Saltro different from Helix Vibrance is the fact that we can now protect the plant during the cotyledon stage (seed leaf development) when the whole seedling comes out of the ground. That’s a critical time for Blackleg to have a really significant impact on canola,” Labun explains.
A bonus with Helix Saltro is that it works well in conjunction with the genetics platform for Blackleg available in the canola hybrids offered by BrettYoung, according to Labun. The Canola Council of Canada is recommending the use of both genetics and seed treatment in combination to fight Blackleg.
“By managing it with both hybrids and seed treatments, you now have a very strong Blackleg management approach,” he says.
Fortenza Advanced provides solid protection against flea beetles. What sets is apart from other treatment packages is the fact that Fortenza Advanced contains two active ingredients (sulfoxaflor and cyantraniliprole) so it protects against cutworms as well.
That kind of protection is essential in canola, says Labun, especially in a year like this one when much of the country was dealing with a cold, dry spring.
“That cold and dry spring made it very challenging for canola to emerge and grow like it usually does when it goes through the various leaf stages,” he adds. “It just becomes more vulnerable to flea beetle and cutworm damage.”
While Helix Saltro can be effective on its own, together with Fortenza Advanced, they offer a valuable one-two punch in the fight against disease and pest pressures that can have devastating consequences.
Labun stresses that now is the right time for you to be thinking of what kind of seed you’ll need to order for next season. He says Fortenza Advanced and Helix Saltro both merit strong consideration since flea beetles have become an annual presence on most fields, and lots of late regrowth this fall could mean a greater risk of cutworms in 2022.
“You can’t go and check your field every day or every week to see what’s happening,” Labun says. “What those two products will do is give you some added protection and some peace of mind.”
For more information on canola seed treatments, contact your BrettYoung Regional Account Manager.