We dedicate this publication to Dr. Paul Heller and Dr. William Merrill for their contribution to the Christmas Tree IPM Program and for many years of commitment to helping growers in Pennsylvania and throughout the United States.
The Pennsylvania Integrated Pest Management Program (PA IPM) is pleased to provide Integrated Pest Management for Christmas Tree Production, designed to help Christmas tree growers manage pests based on sound integrated pest management principles.
Christmas tree growers everywhere face obstacles to growing healthy trees. Perhaps the largest challenge is controlling the pests that feed on and live off of conifers.
IPM practices are generally aimed at an established crop, but some pest prevention can occur before the crop is even planted.
After the Christmas tree block is planted, the focus of an IPM approach will be on preventing losses due to pest damage.
Monitoring is the key to any successful IPM plan. On farms not using IPM, the process of pest control usually involves pesticide applications based on a calendar date.
The action or control threshold refers to the population level for a specifi c pest at which some control measure is justifi ed in order to avoid economic loss or aesthetic damage to a crop.
The ultimate goal of any IPM program is to keep pests under control. Not all control measures will be met with success. Sudden rain showers, rapid drop in temperature, inadequate coverage, and poor mixing are only a few of the causes of control failures.
Note: Growers in other states should consult with their regulatory authority for their state quarantine guidelines.
This chart provides a list of growing degree day ranges (see page 9 for explanation) that correspond with a particular pest life stage or life cycle event that is critical in the control of that pest.
This calendar gives a range of weeks of occurrence for each pest and pest event. The purpose of this calendar is to show growers how dates of particular pest events relate to others throughout the growing season.