With the growing season winding down and most of our traditional fruit pests well under control and not present in orchards, the brown marmorated stink bug (BMSB) continues to represent the most important threat to our apple crop.
At this stage in the season, commercially available traps and lures for brown marmorated stink bug (BMSB) monitoring could provide valuable information to decide if insecticide treatments are needed. Last week (week of Aug 5th), in some traps monitored by our entomology program, we collected over 50 BMSB nymphs and adults per trap. The second generation of codling moth (CM), the third generation Oriental fruit moth and second generations of tufted apple bud moth and obliquebanded leafroller are continuing their flights in most Pennsylvania pome fruit orchards. As the season progresses and the trees become larger, often the volume of used water per acre should be increased. Even the most efficacious pest management products will not work if the spray coverage is not sufficient.
Research trials have shown that applying 3 split applications of ½ rate of ReTain starting 2 to 3 weeks before harvest with subsequent treatments applied 2 to 2.5 weeks apart are equal to or better than other approaches. One single application of ReTain made at the full rate will satisfactorily retard drop for about 35 days in normal years. After that, drop starts to increase and a supplemental application will be necessary to extend the drop control period. Experience in your orchard will be a good guide in assembling the pieces necessary to come up with a good drop control plan.
The weather conditions during the last several weeks have provided excellent conditions for bitter rot. Growers are encouraged to monitor their orchards and apply fungicides on a 10- to 14-day interval until harvest for effective disease control. The latest infection periods have been posted.
As the season progresses and fruit trees become bigger, the volume of used water per acre often needs to be adjusted (increased). Even the most efficacious pest management products will not work if the spray coverage is insufficient. Also during this second half of the season, some of the commonly used developmental models seem to be overestimating the pace of development for codling moth and Oriental fruit moth populations in some orchards. Therefore, such models are not very reliable indicators of the actual pest situation. Please use on-site monitoring as the main indicator in deciding if and when a pesticide application is necessary.
Spotted wing drosophila numbers are continuing to rise, and SWD is now being found in most berry plantings in the central and southeastern parts of the state.
Some small fruit growers, mainly in the southeastern part of the state, have noticed fruit quality problems on their blackberries. This article discusses some common blackberry fruit issues, including whitening of drupelets, drupelet reddening, insect feeding injury, canker diseases and spotted wing drosophila.
The use of pheromone mating disruption, horticultural oils and some of the more selective reduced-risk insecticides and miticides will allow a natural increase of predators capable of regulating pest mite populations to tolerable levels without the use of miticides. The potential savings to Pennsylvania apple growers is approximately $1 million per year and a reduction of almost 1 ton of miticide active ingredient into the environment. Mite control through biological control in apple has the additional advantage of stopping the development of miticide resistance and, once established, is sustainable long-term if the use of certain harmful pesticides is avoided.
With the advent of uniform narrow canopy training systems on dwarfed trees with a simple branching structure that is enforced by renewal pruning, the “artistry” of pruning can be phased out in favor of pruning to a few scientifically sound principals. This article describes a prioritized set of pruning rules based upon these principals.
Spotted wing drosophila (SWD) is now being found more frequently in traps across the state, though numbers are still very low (0-3 per trap per week).
Brown marmorated stink bug adults and nymphs are actively feeding on fruit, mostly peaches and nectarines, although nymphs were also observed on apples and cherries. At this time of the season, commercially available traps and lures for monitoring BMSB can provide a valuable tool to decide if insecticide treatments are needed. With continuous, vigorous growth of trees, populations of spirea aphids are abundant in most orchards, feeding at the top of still growing terminals. High populations of the European red mite are also being observed in some plantings.
The Penn State farm food safety webinar, "Update on the New FDA Produce Safety Standards: Issues of Importance for Pennsylvania Produce Growers", was presented on May 31, 2013 and now is available for viewing.
The tables below present weekly adult moth captures in pheromone traps and degree day comparisons for 2008 to 2013.
Sooty blotch/flyspeck infection period is underway and growers are encouraged to apply a cover spray. The latest infection periods have been posted, which include sooty blotch/flyspeck.
Bacterial spot of stone fruit (caused by Xanthomonas arboricola pv. pruni [Xap]) remains the most important bacterial disease of peach and nectarine in the eastern United States. We conducted a study in 2012 to monitor and identify populations of bacteria in stone fruit orchards, including bacteria resistant to the antibiotic oxytetracycline and to determine the current levels of oxytetracycline sensitivity in Xap populations. Of the 237 isolates tested, 99% and 81% grew in media amended with 5 and 10 mg/L oxytetracycline, respectively, while 25% and 22% of isolates grew in media amended with 15 and 20 mg/L and greater of oxytetracycline, respectively. Prudent use of this antibiotic is advised to prevent the loss of sensitivity.
BMSB adults as well as second and third instar nymphs were found feeding on fruit (mostly peaches and nectarines). If BMSB nymphs are spotted, the control treatment is needed immediately. While adult BMSB can continuously move in and out from any orchard, BMSB nymphs are resident pests and will continue feeding (and damaging fruit) for a consecutive 4 to 6 weeks. During the last week Japanese beetles (JB) were observed feeding in orchards located in southern Pennsylvania. Materials recommended for the control of brown marmorated stink bug should also provide effective control of JB.
Brown marmorated stink bug movement away from overwintering shelters is finally completed. BMSB adults are observed feeding on stone and pome fruit. The first egg masses and second instar nymphs were found during our weekly orchard observations. If BMSB nymphs are spotted, a control treatment is needed immediately. First generation codling moth (CM) flight continues in all areas across Pennsylvania. If pheromone trap captures indicate strong continuous CM flight, third applications of control materials will be needed. The second or third treatment of insecticides for the control of codling moth should also effectively control tufted apple bud moth (TABM) larvae. No Oriental fruit moth (OFM) control is required at this time.
The primary infection period for apple scab is nearing an end. Scab sources are still being sought in the region for fungicide resistance studies. Included is a thank you note to the attendees of the Spring Meetings.
With an alumni base of 600 strong, The Pennsylvania Rural-Urban Leadership Program (RULE) still has room to grow. Leadership is all over the map and it’s certainly in your part of Pennsylvania.
During this past week, relatively high numbers of adults (for this time of the season) were observed feeding on stone and pome fruit. The first egg masses and young nymphs were also found. If BMSB nymphs are spotted, a control treatment is needed immediately. Codling moth (CM) adults continue first generation flight in all areas of Pennsylvania. The second treatment of insecticides for the control of codling moth should also effectively control early tufted apple bud moth (TABM) larvae.