Summary and Implications
During the last few years, EPA approved pesticide labels for a few foliar fungicide products for use in alfalfa production. However, university research regarding potential economic benefits of these products is extremely limited. In addition, aggressive salesmanship recommending multiple applications per season raises concerns with proper stewardship for these products to insure long-term effectiveness.
Eight site years of research trials from 2011 through 2013 conducted at the ISU Northeast Research Farm, Nashua found foliar fungicides applications made prior to first crop harvest of established stands are very likely to be profitable due to improved yields and calculated “Milk per Acre”. But limited forage testing in these trials showed no significant difference in forage quality measured as “Milk per Ton”. Profitability of foliar fungicides applications ahead of second, third or fourth crop harvests was inconsistent and often of minimal value
Iowa State University
Lang, Brian J. and Pecinovsky, Kenneth T.
"Foliar Fungicides in Alfalfa Production,"
Animal Industry Report:
AS 660, ASL R2875.
Available at: http://lib.dr.iastate.edu/ans_air/vol660/iss1/40