Battling Silk Flies in South Florida Sweet Corn

Abbey Taylor Corn, Pests, Top Posts, VSCNews magazine

By Julien Beuzelin South Florida sweet corn growers continue to face two major insect problems: fall armyworms and corn silk flies. The two pests can be devastating, but corn silk flies are more challenging to manage than fall armyworms under current production practices. Three silk fly species have been reported to cause the majority of the damage: Euxesta eluta, Euxesta …

Beetle Borer in Blueberries

Abbey Taylor Berries, Pests, Top Posts, VSCNews magazine

By Janine Spies Since 2014, several Florida blueberry growers have reported seeing tunneling or girdling on the canes of their blueberry bushes. Oscar Liburd at the University of Florida has been investigating the source of the damage in blueberries along with his graduate students Lindsy Iglesias and Krystal Ashman in the Fruit and Vegetable IPM Laboratory. In the summer of …

Nematode Density Impacts Damage

Abbey Taylor Pests, Top Posts, VSCNews magazine, Watermelon

Root-knot nematodes are many crops’ worst enemy, including watermelon. Abolfazl Hajihassani, vegetable nematologist with the University of Georgia, recently completed a study analyzing how the population density of nematodes impacts watermelon damage. He presented the results of this trial at the Southeast Regional Fruit and Vegetable Conference in Savannah, Georgia, in January. STUDY SUMMARY Hajihassani began the trial by inoculating …

Diamondback Moth Update

Abbey Taylor Pests, Research, Top Posts

Diamondback moth (DBM) has been a menace for brassica growers around the globe for decades. After a major outbreak in 2016, the issue became much more prevalent in Florida and Georgia. So, researchers from the University of Florida (UF) and the University of Georgia (UGA) have recently been studying how resistant these pests have become to commonly used insecticides. Hugh …

The Benefits of Beneficials

Abbey Taylor Alabama, Pests, Top Posts, VSCNews magazine

For organic growers, the tools to control pests are scarce. However, using insects to fend off pests may be a good option. Ayanava Majumdar, Alabama Cooperative Extension entomologist with Auburn University, has been studying the impacts of beneficials for years and is constantly getting questions from growers about how best to use these pest management tools. Majumdar says beneficials, or …

The Pepper Weevil Problem

Abbey Taylor Pests, Top Posts

By Ernie Neff University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) entomologist Hugh Smith says the pepper weevil is a major challenge to growers because it’s “a primary pest that directly attacks the marketable part of the fruit.” Smith, associate professor at the Gulf Coast Research and Education Center in Wimauma, says the pepper weevil attacks all types …

Management Methods for Flower Thrips

Alison DeLoach Berries, Pests, Top Posts

By Alison DeLoach Since flower thrips have been causing concerns for Georgia’s blueberry growers, the pest was a topic discussed at the Southeast Regional Fruit and Vegetable Conference. At the conference, Renee Allen, area blueberry agent with the University of Georgia (UGA), presented research on flower thrips and management recommendations for growers. According to Allen, research was conducted in New …

Peach Pest Forecast

Alison DeLoach Pests, Top Posts

By Alison DeLoach Brett Blaauw, assistant professor and Extension specialist at the University of Georgia and Clemson University, gave his peach pest forecast for the year during his presentation at the recent Southeast Regional Fruit and Vegetable Conference. Regarding San Jose scale, Blaauw expects  a tough year for growers. He said this winter has been relatively warm, creating a good …