New York State IPM Program

Efficacy Goes Organic

New York ranks fourth in the nation for number of certified organic farms and sixth in vegetable production, ringing the registers at more than $14 million.

Squash vine borer is a key pest — often not found till the damage is done.

Squash vine borer is a key pest — often not found till the damage is done.

Organic practices help healthy crops shrug off many insect pests — disease pests too. But if you’re a grower, you know some pests persist despite well-designed farming system. So for the past three years, we’ve run organic pesticide trials pitting both old standards and new arrivals on the market against a foursome of vexing insect pests and a duo of deadly diseases. We want to see which treatments are effective — and which are money down the drain.

The insects:  squash vine borer, swede midge, crucifer flea beetle and (but of course) cucumber beetle. The diseases: alternaria blight and downy mildew.

Our results? We found a couple of effective products for organic farmers to use against squash vine borer, and one that shows promise against swede midge.

The other insects and the diseases?  We’re still looking ….

Downy mildew is among the most problematic diseases farmers face. We're still on the hunt for a solution.

Downy mildew is among the most problematic diseases farmers face. We’re still on the hunt for a solution.

Want something to read over breakfast? See our efficacy reports online.

Author: Mary Woodsen

Author: Mary M. Woodsen

Pests and pesticides — both can cause harm. How can we protect ourselves the least-toxic way? IPM is the sound, sensible, science-based approach that works wherever you do. The New York State Integrated Pest Management Program develops and offers tested tactics for pests new and old, whether on farms, offices, orchards, schools, parks, vineyards, more.... Wherever you find pests, you find IPM.

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