North Carolina Researchers Find New Ways to Control Pest Mites in Tomatoes
MILLS RIVER, North Carolina – Predatory mites can control two-spotted spider mites in vegetable crops under the right management plan, according to a North Carolina State University researcher. James Walgenbach studied Phytoseiulus persimilis, a predatory mite, and its ability to control two-spotted spider mites in the tomato fields of North Carolina through a Southern Sustainable […]
Researchers Recommend New Strategies to Suppress Southern Potato Blight
PAINTER, Virginia – Earlier planting dates coupled with disease-tolerant cultivars of potatoes are recommended strategies to suppress southern potato blight, according to Virginia Tech researchers. The fungal disease, caused by the soil born pathogen Sclerotium rolfsii, affects the stems of the plants and produces lesions on the tubers, impacting quality and yields. In a Southern […]
Exploring Alternative Methods for Controlling A Major Pest in Sweet Sorghum
LEXINGTON, Kentucky – University of Kentucky researchers are exploring alternative methods for controlling sugarcane aphid in sweet sorghum, a major crop for farmers in the state. Through a Southern Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education (SSARE) On-Farm Research Grant, entomologist Nathan Mercer and his colleagues are studying a combination of parasitoids and insecticidal soaps as a […]
Using Row Covers to Protect Squash from Insect Pests
DURANT, Oklahoma — Using row covers on squash protects the vegetable crop from insect pests such as the squash bug, but timing of their removal can impact pollination and subsequent plant yields, according to Oklahoma State University research. In a two-year study, horticulturist Jim Shrefler analyzed pest and pollinator incidences and measured squash yields using […]
More Targeted Use of Horticultural Oils in Peach Trees Better Manages San Jose Scale, UGA Researchers Find
ATHENS, Georgia – Using horticultural oil sprays as an Integrated Pest Management (IPM) strategy to control San Jose scale in peach trees can be an effective alternative to chemical applications, and University of Georgia researchers have found that the best control comes after trees have been pruned, allowing for lower application rates than previously recommended. […]
Look to a Trap Crop-Cover Crop Mix as an IPM Strategy in Vegetable Production
GAINESVILLE, Florida – Vegetable farmers looking to curtail pesticide use may find alternative pest management strategies in the form of a trap crop/cover crop mix. Through a Southern Sustainable Agriculture Research & Education (SSARE) Graduate Student Grant, University of Florida researchers studied the application of African Marigold (Tagetes erecta) and cowpea (Vigna unguiculata) for Integrated […]
Sustainably Knocking Out Pests and Increasing Fruit Production and Quality of Primocane Blackberries
SEARCY, Arkansas – Primocane blackberries, which can extend the fruiting season by months over traditional plant varieties, are changing the way farmers are growing berries. But they don’t come without their pest and production challenges, which University of Arkansas researchers are trying to solve with a naturally occurring soil mineral. Through a Southern Sustainable Agriculture […]
Adding Flowering Plants to Strawberry Fields to Enhance Pest Management and Biodiversity
WIMAUMA, Florida — Over the last few years, Florida strawberry growers have been faced with declining market prices, increased global competition, and suspected and documented cases of insecticide resistance. In addition, growing concerns for overall environmental health have increased as we see trends of habitat loss and declining biodiversity, specifically of natural enemies and pollinators. […]
Innovations in Large-Scale Trap Cropping for Reducing Insect Pests
Trap cropping is a unique pest prevention system that uses insect behavior to deter pest feeding. Benefits of trap cropping not only include effective pest management, but trap crops can also increase biodiversity, conserve natural enemies and reduce wind damage to main crops.
Cover Crops Acting as Trap Crops Protect Vegetables from Pests
LIVE OAK, Florida – For farmers in central Florida, planting cover crops in strips as a trap crop alongside cash crops is proving to be a highly effective method for attracting beneficial insects and controlling pests. Farmers have been so pleased with the results that they have fully adopted the Integrated Pest Management (IPM) strategy […]
Cover Crops Can Help Control Pests by Fostering Natural Enemies
TALLAHASSEE, Florida – Cover crops used as refuge crops in vegetable production can control insect pests by fostering populations of natural enemies and competitor non-virus vectoring species, based on the results of USDA-ARS research. Research entomologists Stephen Hight with the USDA-ARS Insect Behavior and Biocontrol Research Unit in Florida, and Stuart Reitz with Oregon State […]
UGA Studying Biocontrol Method to Control Cucurbit Diseases
ATHENS, Georgia – Some species of naturally occurring bacteria, when applied to the flowers of watermelon plants, can reduce the spread of bacterial fruit blotch – a cucurbit disease that causes fruit rot and economic losses. The technique of applying bacteria to the stigmas of female flowers to slow the spread of bacterial fruit blotch […]
Expanding the IPM Toolbox to Fight Spotted Wing Drosophila
GAINESVILLE, Florida – University of Florida researchers are expanding the Integrated Pest Management (IPM) toolbox for blueberry growers fighting the spotted wing Drosophila (Drosophila suzukii) – a destructive pest of small fruit crops. Through a Southern Sustainable Agriculture Research & Education (SSARE) Graduate Student Grant (GS12-114), entomology graduate student Lindsy Iglesias, along with professor Oscar […]
High Tunnel Pest Exclusion System
Insect pests are one of the major problems in organic production systems. Organic IPM practice consists of a three-tiered approach consisting of systems-based practices, mechanical tactics, and biorational insecticides. Mechanical tactics encourage the use of physical barriers for pest exclusion. This bulletin provides preliminary research data and field observations about the success of shade cloths, or high tunnel pest exclusion (HTPE) systems, as a more permanent barrier system around the high tunnels.
Whole-Farm Integrated Pest Management (IPM) Video Series
If you want to know the best ways to manage pests via integrated pest management, you can find all of the information you need in a series of video modules created by University of Florida IFAS Extension faculty. These IPM strategy modules are targeted for those looking to implement IPM strategies either on a whole-farm or whole-landscape level.
High Tunnel Pest Exclusion System Part II
With the increasing demand for local foods across the Southeast, an increasing number of beginning, as well as experienced producers are producing vegetable crops in high tunnels for direct and whole sale markets. From the insect management perspective, it is extremely critical to adopt pest prevention practices; the high tunnel pest exclusion (HTPE) system is one of the best relatively-low cost pest preventive practices available to producers in the Southeast. This HTPE technology uses a variety of shade cloths for a relatively permanent pest prevention strategy. This bulletin provides information on the use of HTPE systems on the farm.
Sustainable Methods to Control Mexican Bean Beetle in Snap Beans
BLACKSBURG, Virginia – Reflective plastic mulches, such as silver (metalized) or white, significantly reduces populations of Mexican bean beetles on snap beans, while significantly increasing yields, according to the results of a Virginia Tech study. Mexican bean beetle (Epilachna varivestis Mulsant) is a serious pest of snap bean varieties, causing injury by feeding on the […]
Physical Pest Exclusion with Shade Cloth
Alabama farmer Will Mastin describes his experience using shade cloth on a high tunnel to protect crops from some pests. Mastin’s trials with shade cloth were funded by a grant from Southern SARE. Throughout his project, Mastin worked with Alabama Extension entomologist and Southern SARE state coordinator Dr. Ayanava Majumdar to improve the shade cloth technology. […]
Sustainable Blackberries and Raspberries
A handbook to guide growers in sustainable practices of fruit production from production practices to business management to marketing, for high tunnel and field production.
Management of Mexican Bean Beetle in Snap Beans Using Cultural Control Strategies
A series of fact sheets from Virginia Tech on cultural control strategies to manage the Mexican bean beetle, a pest of snap beans.