Whitefly Pressure Increasing in Florida

Jim Rogers Florida, Pests

Whitefly pressure is intensifying in regions across south Florida, according to the South Florida Pest and Disease Hotline. Populations have increased significantly in central Florida, reaching moderate to elevated levels in older plants of squash and cucumber. High levels of nymphs and eggs are also being observed, which indicates the potential for a population boom. Moderate levels are also reported …

How to Prevent Fruit-Boring Squash Insects

Jim Rogers Cucurbits, Pests

By Ayanava Majumdar, Olivia Fuller, David Lawrence and Jacob Kelley Squash and related cucurbits are favorite summer vegetables in farms across the Southeast. Though cucurbits grow fast under the right conditions, numerous insect pests feeding at various crop stages can make cucurbits a messy ordeal! In Alabama, cucumber beetles, squash vine borers and squash bugs arrive routinely during the young …

Storms May Aid in Transportation of Insect Pests

Jim Rogers Alabama, Pests, Weather

By Clint Thompson Most of Alabama has received its share of rainfall this spring. But with inclement weather, especially high winds, comes the potential for certain insect pests to be moved from field to field, says Ayanava Majumdar, Extension professor in entomology and plant pathology at Auburn University. “If there’s any moth flights that have already begun, these storms will …

Overuse of Specific Pesticides Reason for Chilli Thrips Problem in Strawberries

Jim Rogers Pests, Research, Strawberry

By Clint Thompson Overuse of specific pesticides led to chilli thrips being more of a problem for Florida strawberry producers this season. Sriyanka Lahiri, assistant professor of entomology and nematology at the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences Gulf Coast Research and Education Center, said pesticides should be used in rotation. “You have four products. All of …

Weed Management Key to Grape Root Borer Control

Jim Rogers Pests, Research

By Clint Thompson A management practice as simple as weed control can help grape producers reduce grape root borer populations. The grape root borer is an annual pest that can devastate a grape crop. Its larvae feed on the roots of grape vines. They have a two-year life cycle and will feed underground on the roots for nearly 22 months. …

New Viruses to Watch for in Watermelon and Other Cucurbits

Jim Rogers Disease, Pests, Watermelon

By Pamela D. Roberts Whitefly-transmitted viruses are the major disease problem for watermelons grown in South Florida. For the past few decades, whitefly-transmitted viruses have included squash vein yellowing virus (SqVYV), cucurbit leaf crumple virus (CuLCrV) and cucurbit yellow stunting disorder virus (CYSDV). A HISTORY OF VIRUSESAlthough SqVYV was first identified from squash in Florida in 2005, it had most likely been …

Giant Pestiferous Lizards a Threat to Fruits and Vegetables in South Georgia

Jim Rogers Fruit, Georgia, Pests, Vegetables

By Rick Lavender for CAES News Warming temperatures will have tegus on the move in southeast Georgia. Residents and farmers are asked to report sightings of tegus, alive or dead. This is needed to keep the big, South American lizards from gaining a foothold in the state, according to the Georgia Department of Natural Resources (DNR). These reptiles, the largest …

Florida Strawberry Producer: Chilli Thrips, Spider Mites Were Major Problems

Jim Rogers Florida, Pests, Strawberry

By Clint Thompson Ideal weather conditions led to diseases being a non-factor in Florida strawberry production this year. But two insect pests were very impactful, says one Florida farmer. “What we did have problems with were the chilli thrips. They just ate us up from day one and we  never gained control of it in some blocks,” said Dustin Grooms, …