New York State IPM Program

IPM | Looking Back to Look Ahead Circa 1986

Last week we announced that — now that we’re 30 — we’ve planned a whole different take on our Year in Review.  For prepping for NYS IPM’s 30th anniversary takes looking back — back to times when IPM was a whole new ballgame for farmers statewide.

What are we finding? Take these “for instances”:

Our 1986 annual report shows that our first year out of the gate we tested and tweaked new, computer-based disease-forecasting systems for certain insect and disease pests of apples, grapes, onions, and tomatoes.

Grape berry moths: pretty at first glance.

Grape berry moths: pretty at first glance.

Those models are primitive compared to what we have today — but they offered a critically important launch pad. For instance: we demoed these models to snap bean growers in western New York, who saw how — given growing conditions that year — forecasting for white mold could eliminate 50% of fungicide treatments while onion growers could cut herbicide use by 47%.

But ... grape berry moth larvae and the damage they do? Not pretty at all.

But … grape berry moth larvae and the damage they do? Not pretty at all.

Also that first year, we taught  IPM in 17 counties, reaching and teaching 438 producers, 11 consultants, and 52 scouts how to use IPM. For instance: on Long Island, IPM potato farmers followed our recommendations and made 2.2 fewer pesticide applications.

Dairy and livestock are big in New York, and — (the last for instance in this post) our IPM cooperators in southwestern New York consistently combined higher yields with fewer inputs.

Productive from the get-go: that’s NYS IPM. Stay tuned for more from the annals.

Photo credits for adult and larval grape berry moths: Todd Gilligan and Marc Epstein, USDA APHIS.


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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