March 10, 2017

Greenhouse IPM update 3.10.17

Snow again!  And since they removed the Cornus mas from outside my window, I don’t have that friendly reminder of swelling buds to tell me spring is coming.  But it is, I know it IS!

Check those fertilizer injectors!  Who wants to find out they aren’t working by having plants show symptoms – and then trying to figure out why!  Thomas Ford in eGro says from his work “75% of the fertilizer injectors employed by growers in are greenhouses are not working properly”. We’ve already heard of one case in NY. Lots of information here.

Get the key to locking out pests (my, that’s kind of a stretch but it is Friday).  Leeane Pundt at UConn has a great post on key plants and key pests to help you inspect new plant material coming in and scouting it once it’s in your greenhouse.

Another on scouting guidelines and biocontrol options for the most common insects and diseases found in greenhouse crops.

And since a picture is worth a thousand words…illustrated scouting tips for lots of crops
Ornamental crops
Vegetable bedding plants
Herb bedding plants
Herbaceous perennials
Identifying pests and beneficials on sticky cards
Go UConn!

Think (no) thrips!  UMass’ post on reviewing thrips biocontrol 

Webinars and more webinars…
Our series on high tunnel and greenhouse vegetable IPM continues to grow.  The most recent one was just posted!

OMAFRA’s greenhouse vegetable IPM specialist on Heating, Lighting and IPM
March 30, 2017
Using biofungicides, biostimulants, and biofertilizers to boost crop productivity and help manage vegetable diseases – not just greenhouse but perhaps still useful!

Bees are still in the news!  One study from England I read said that most varieties surveyed in garden centers were unattractive to pollinators (actually measuring the number of visits by pollinators at the garden center itself).  While still low, those with some notation as being friendly to bees had 4x as many visits.  Hopefully this listing would fare better –  Bee friendly trees and shrubs

Yes, but can they learn to dust?  Bees are smarter than we thought – or else maybe they are training us.  Hmmm….

Courage in the face of cold!  It will be warm again!

February 26, 2017

Greenhouse IPM Update 2.26.17

Spring?!  I know it’s not but I do like seeing that witch hazel and some snow drops blooming on campus.

And that makes me think of aphids…really?  Well, since Sarah Jandricid reports that foxglove aphids produce more offspring at 50-60F than at higher temperatures, maybe we should be thinking about them.  Especially if you had foxglove aphids last year (they are the one’s with dark green patches at the base of their ‘tailpipes’).  Go look now!

Early – that’s the key word – and here it is in Michael Brownbridge’s article Prevention and Early Intervention:  The Keys to Biocontrol Success in Greenhouse Crops published in Greenhouse Grower

More aphids?  Dan Gilrein’s e-GRO blog post on aphids and calibrachoas (aphids do seem to love them!)

Spring cleaning?  I am trying to reduce the amount of stuff in my office and house (not that you can really tell yet) but the same is true for greenhouses, and even relates to IPM.  Reducing clutter might help figure out where the pests are hiding over the winter (sneaky weeds get everywhere!).

Hooray for alliteration! Premier Tech led me to Pythium and then to Penn State – who have a lot of useful information on plant diseases I hadn’t found before.  Noodle around on the website, there are some listed by crop and other under general diseases.

And back to Pythium – Here’s Penn State’s fact sheet and the one from Premier Tech  and their list of things you can do after planting to minimize root diseases

Just in case you get tired of me telling you about Integrated Pest Management (well, how could you?), here’s the word from Van Belle Nursery with a nice video, too.

Want to read something a little edgy?  Very comprehensive article on the causes of leaf margin issues from Paul Thomas and U of Georgia.  We usually see a few of these every spring!

Wonderful wrigglers?  Not worms but nematodes – the good kind!  A nice article from UMass on using beneficial nematodes.

Boxwood blight – I don’t even have to add the alliteration.  The original article and one where you can see the pictures (which are from Margery Daughtrey!).

Back to bee basics.  Grow wise Bee Smart  BMP’s for bee health in horticulture
http://growwise.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/01/HRI-Pollinator-BMPs-January2017.pdf

Rent a chicken?  There are a few chicken owners I know but they haven’t capitalized on their bug eating habits yet (that I know off) for greenhouses.

Wow, a lot to cover today!   Must be because it is spring!

Have a great week!

February 17, 2017

Greenhouse IPM update 2.17.17

The sun is shining in my office window, which makes me want to head home. But I’ll stick around long enough to send this off to you (and hope you find time to get out in the sun, too)

I gave a talk on biopesticides so guess what? I have information on biopesticides for you!

Looking for biopesticides that are appropriate for a particular problem – heck, even if you are just looking for pesticides for a particular problem? IR4 has a cool labels database which includes efficacy data so you can compare! Its got a good search page and links to labels, even tells you if it is acceptable for organic production. I LOVE it when people make my job easier!

Spear and Spear T are biological insecticides – based on spider peptides no less (Charlotte! Who knew!) – newly registered for NYS. Spear is registered for ornamentals, edible, and turf (a variety of Lepidoptera and thrips). Spear T is labeled for thrips management in greenhouses. If you’ve tried them, I’d like to hear about efficacy.  To find NYS labels go to  NYS PAD and look under Names – Spear and Registrant – Vestaron.

Apps, apps and more apps. Of course, my favorite is my own and you can watch me talk about it at a Horticulture seminar  (January 30 blog post) It is called Greenhouse Scout and is available on Apple and Android.

19 for Nurseries! And other plant geeks.

Greenhouse Grower’s App (only for Apple smart devices) – a set of 12 production calculators and a free Lite version of 5 of them). It is from Australia so the measurements are in different units.

Now that you are (or are thinking about) warming up your greenhouses for the spring crop, don’t assume that the cold weather killed off all the insect pests. They are diabolically clever at surviving (remember some of them survive outside in the winter, too). A great article from UMass with additional resources to convince you.  Want to know what’s popping out before the plants go in? Hang sticky cards under the benches if there is enough soil on the floor for fungus gnats and thrips to survive in, or near where pests might come in to the greenhouse and see what you catch.

I’ve heard one report so far of broad mite (admittedly not in NY but they like it here, too) so here’s Dan Gilrein’s broad mite post from e-Gro. There are other posts on the topic there, too – just Google e-Gro and broad mite and they will pop up, just like broad mites)

Aphids will tolerate cooler temperatures than some pests so we have seen aphids happily going about their unfortunate business in overwintered perennials in tunnels in late winter (is it late winter yet?). And heard anecdotally that people have successfully used ladybugs to control them. So, an article from Suzanne Wainwright-Evans (the BugLady) on using wild collected ladybugs  (Don’t even think about it!)

Enough for one post! But lots more to come.

December 20, 2016

Greenhouse IPM Update 12.20.16

Are all your greenhouses tucked up for winter?  And all those poinsettias sold?  Just think, you could be Christmas tree producers!

Do we need another disease on chrysanthemums- especially one carried by thrips?  Are growers seeing this in NYS?  MSU’s research report on tomato spotted wilt on chrysanthemum.

Oh goody, another chrysanthemum disease that looks similar to TSWV!  This stem necrosis virus on chrysanthemum has only been seen in Korea so far.  Whew!

On the plant growth regulator front . .  Information from Joyce Latimer at Virginia Tech on why PGR labels aren’t specific by crop. And e-GRO’s PGR MixMaster app to help you calculate amounts. There are lots of other reports on PGR application research at e-GRO, too.

And in preparation for next year’s poinsettias – can you really start too soon thinking about them? – an article on biocontrol for poinsettia
And information on aerial blight on poinsettias – an uncommon disease caused by our unfortunately common friend Phytophthora (so common I was forced to learn to spell it correctly)  (remember to check NYSPAD for NYS labels of any pesticides)

Oh, just one more beast to keep an eye out for – and aphids are likely to pop up earlier in the spring than we like – the foxglove aphid. Getting to be much more common in greenhouses.

Well maybe another – broad mite in pepper.  Do you have gnarly looking leaves?  Look VERY closely for this pest.

Enough for this time!

Some lovely sunny days lately!  Have a great week!

September 13, 2016

Greenhouse IPM update 9.13.16

Ah, long falls – the climatic type, not the tripping down stairs type – and Indian summer….

I’ll start out with something just for pretty – we are (all?) plant geeks after all –
You can come visit the new conservatory when you are on campus!

Those new WPS rules – need help?  DEC is running some mock WPS inspections in October to help.  Oct 5 at Dickman Farms in Auburn, 9:30-12:00. No registration fee and no need to pre-register.  2 DEC credits for 1a, 1d, 10, 21, 22, 23, 24 and 25.  Oct 19 in Riverhead and Oct 26th in Lockport. Let me know if you need more information.

ProMix/Premier Tech Grower Videos – some useful topics like roles of nutrients in plant growth, calibrating pH and EC meters, and how to determine if your media is too old.

Tunnel Vision – what’s going on in tunnels these days?
Need something different in your high tunnels or greenhouses?  Try TunnelBerries (not sure if that is a great marketing name…).  Production guides, economics, and how to build and even recycle the plastic from tunnels.  (Check out the blog and you can find Cornell’s Marvin Pritts pictured)

And the University of Kentucky has a new IPM Scouting Guide for High Tunnel and Greenhouse Vegetable Crops.

September is flying by – still have plants to get in the garden!

Have a great week!

August 31, 2016

Greenhouse IPM Update 8.31.16

Life on the lake…..ahhh.  Even though I am (really, I am) working.

A virus to watch out for – tomato spotted wilt in chrysanthemums.  The MSU article won’t connect but here it is via Floradaily.  And so you have lots of pictures – here and here.

Yet another pest to keep an eye out for.  Pepper weevil We don’t have too many greenhouse pepper growers in NYS that I know of but it is a pest in the greenhouse pepper industry in Leamington ON – not that far away.

And while we are at it – insects AND chrysanthemums – Chrysanthemum aphid.

Lettuce be clear – growing greenhouse greens year ‘round requires lots of environmental monitoring.  A nice article with information from Neil Mattson.

Do the dew! Learn how to calculate a dew point and how it might affect disease incidence in your greenhouse. An article and a webinar Sept 8.  (I hadn’t hear of Upstart University which is online and for profit but might have some good information.)

How often do you hear this question: Are you keeping your bumblebees cool enoughLearn how to answer it.

Keeping things warm – solar/thermal greenhouse heating.  When I met Rob Hastings he said his first year farming there was a frost in almost every month.  So he understands the need for alternative methods.

There’s more but I save it so you can enjoy the day…