2015 marks our 30th anniversary here at NYS IPM. With age comes a new approach to our Year in Review — to our annual report. Yes, as always our focus is real science for real people. But “commodity driven” has long been our organizing principle.
This year our Year in Review will be different — a difference that’s as new as tomorrow. No matter if you’re coping with rats in the furnace room or late blight in tomato fields large and small, most everything in IPM relates to something else in IPM. So our organizing principle this year? I’m calling it “A Theme Runs Through It.”
Our themes? Inasives are a biggie, so lets start there. Given the invasives and emerging pests we were seeing 30 years ago, could we foreseen the meteoric rise in bed bugs? Stick bugs? And not just insects, but new viruses, bacteria, weeds?
More themes? Pest forecasts — because if you know a problem is headed your way, it’s easier to take action to prevent or better cope with it. Applied research that spans years — because when you test new IPM tactics under a range of conditions year in and year out, you have a clearer picture of do they work and what should you tweak one year that you don’t need to the next. Education — because people learn with their hands as well as their heads. Nor is that all.
Each theme offers incorporates core principles of IPM: Prevention. Monitoring. Meeting cultural needs. Natural enemies of pests — biocontrol, in a word. Lures and traps. Healthy soil. Healthy plants. Healthy homes and schools — healthy kids. They apply across the board.
Oh — and by culture, no; we don’t mean a night at the opera. (Or even the pool hall). We mean finding the right site, whether indoors or out, with the right conditions for the plants you want to grow.
We’ll have more. Stay tuned.