Integrating Integrated Pest Management


Well, today, we'll be talking about integrating

integrated pest management.

So farmers are faced with many different pest concerns

that they have to contend with.

There are insects that can defoliate the entire crop.

There are weeds that can compete with the crop plants for light,

moisture, and nutrients.

And there are many plant pathogens

that can cause disease epidemics that

can spread throughout the crop.

To combat any one of these problems,

we can use integrated pest management techniques, that is,

using multiple methods to try and control

any one pest problem.


For example, we can consider how insecticides

may affect not just the pests, but non-targets as well.

Pyrethroid insecticides can be used

to manage certain pests, such as psyllids, leaf hoppers,

for lygus bugs, quite successfully.

But their use can trigger outbreaks

of other pests, like aphids, thrips, or even spider mites.

Tank Mixing

And that's because the pyrethroids kill off

the natural enemies of these particular pests,

allowing those pest populations to build up.

Therefore, it's important to weigh the costs and benefits

of different management tactics on the overall crop production.

Another practice we can keep in mind

is when we tank mix different classes of pesticides.

The tank mixing is an efficient means

to save time and money because we need to make

fewer trips through the field.

However, keep in mind that many of today's newer insecticides

need to be absorbed into the plant in order to be effective.

In contrast, protective fungicides

are formulated so that they spread out

across the leaf surface of the planet,

and this helps them to stop the spread of disease

across the leaves.

Complex Interactions

So if these materials-- an insecticide that

needs to be absorbed and a fungicide that

needs to spread out-- are simply tank mixed,

the fungicide can actually interfere

with the effectiveness of the insecticide.

Therefore, we would want to add a chemical adjuvant that

helps the insecticide penetrate into the plant surface

to make the tank mix effective.

Even more complex interactions can

exist in agricultural systems.

Pests such as a aphids can breed and reproduce

on a number of different weeds, including

weeds like nightshade.

And some of these weeds are also hosts for viruses,

such as Potato virus Y, or PVY, which

is a devastating viral pathogen of potatoes

and is actually transmitted by aphids.

Therefore, if you have good weed management in and around potato

fields, it can help contribute to improved control pest

insects, such as aphids and insect-transmitted plant

pathogens by reducing the reservoirs for these insects

and viruses.


So in conclusion, remember to keep in mind

the different approaches you can use

to manage any particular pest, whether it's

an insect, a weed, or a plant disease,

and then keep in mind how these different management

techniques for one pest may affect management

of other pests.

So try, again, to integrate your different integrated pest

management programs so that you'll

be able to produce a successful, sustainable, and economical

crop in the end.

Insects, weeds and plant pathogens are problems that confront farmers in trying to grow a successful crop. Insect pests can defoliate crop plants. Weeds can outcompete crops for light, water and nutrients. Pathogens can cause disease epidemics that destroy entire crops.

Catalog - EM 9119

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