AgraQuest, Inc. announced that its soil fungicide, Serenade Soil is now approved for use against white mold in peanuts.

Introduced into the peanut market early last year, Serenade Soil is a unique soil fungicide combining control on important yield-robbing diseases with root colonization and plant growth effects, giving growers a unique new approach to both protect and enhance yields. Trials have demonstrated control of rhizoctonia and white mold as well as yield increases.

"The benefits of Serenade Soil in peanuts are exciting," said Ken Phelps, AgraQuest's North American marketing manager. "During our development of this product, we've proven yield effects worth $35 to $130 per dollar spent on the fungicide."

Applied at planting, Serenade Soil first attacks soil-dwelling pathogens, and then quickly builds a disease protection zone around the seed. As the seedling grows, the beneficial bacteria in Serenade Soil continue to grow, attaching themselves to the roots of the plant, expanding the disease protection zone. Unlike traditional soil fungicides, this second powerful effect continues to protect the plant during the season resulting in higher-yielding fields and better quality fruits and vegetables.

Serenade Soilis also registered for control of rhizoctonia. In 2012 field trials it will continue to be evaluated for suppression of Cylindrocladium black rot.

"With resistance management a major concern in peanuts, Serenade Soil offers a novel mode of action and a new tool to help with existing programs," said Phelps. "The combination of disease-controlling metabolites with plant growth promotion effects can make this a powerful new approach."

Available to U.S. growers of fruits and vegetables since 2010, Serenade Soil has quickly gained a following among growers seeking improved yields and profits. Years of investigation have demonstrated that plants treated with Serenade Soil fungicide are stronger and healthier, and deliver average yield increases of better than 13 percent across a variety of crops, growing practices and production areas.