in Action (Part 2 of 2)
Guatemalan officials seek IPM advisor's expertise
The Guatemalan Ministry of Agriculture and its export affiliate Expront invited UC IPM
Advisor Phil Phillips to help with pest and disease surveys in Guatemalan avocado plantations.
His role was to oversee, critique, and advise on the protocol developed for the survey
and to participate in field visits for on-site training of Profruta (the extension arm of the
Ministry of Agriculture) technical advisors.
Phil demonstrated sampling techniques such as the use of Teddar traps, sticky traps, and
beat-sheet sampling. He also demonstrated survey and detection strategies for four avocado
stem, fruit, and seed borers that are on the USDA-APHIS quarantine list for avocados.
Phil met with producers, consultants, and Expront and Profruta officials to discuss field
biology, management strategies, and survey and detection technology for pests. In
addition, he made on-site preparations for testing “best guess” pheromone formulations
developed by Dr. Jocelyn Millar, UC Riverside, for survey and detection of the avocado
seed moth Stenoma catenifer.
At the end of his weeklong visit, Phil presented a seminar in Spanish on avocado
integrated pest management to growers, consultants, and officials of various agencies
involved in the surveys.
Landfills pose problems for integrated pest management
When a landfill is located close to agricultural
land, integrated pest management is
threatened. UC IPM Advisor Phil Phillips maintains an ongoing dialogue with
Ventura County land use planners, the air
pollution control district, and growers about
this important issue.
“The dust from these sites poses potential
long-term disruption of IPM programs,
specifically biological controls, in adjacent
crops,” says Phil.
Through his previous research on the
impact of PM10-sized dust on key parasitoids
in citrus integrated pest management,
Phil is able to provide specific feedback on
the negative effects of fine dust particles that
move off site and into local citrus and
Integrated weed management plays role in changing environment
As the boundaries narrow between urban and rural areas, California growers face
challenges to modify their farming practices
to comply with new regulations governing
air, water, and soil quality. Any changes in a
farming practice, however, can have
unintended consequences on integrated pest
Weed management in conservation tillage
is one avenue the IPM Program is exploring to help reduce dust emissions to maintain air
quality. IPM Weed Advisor Anil Shrestha is working closely with the UC ANR California
Conservation Tillage Workgroup, USDA-NRCS, UC Cooperative Extension farm advisors,
UC Davis specialists, and growers to reduce tillage in cropping systems. The groups are
monitoring weed populations and developing appropriate weed management methods in
small grain-bean rotations, no-tillage dairy corn, and reduced-tillage tomato cropping
systems in the San Joaquin Valley.
Anil is conducting on-farm and on-station research to identify problems and prospects,
giving extension talks, writing articles, and presenting results at meetings on weed
management in conservation tillage systems.
Adoption of conservation tillage is relatively low in California compared to several other
states in the U.S.,” says Anil. “This is partly because of differences in climate and soils. We
can’t use recommendations on conservation tillage from other states because of the
complexity of cropping systems in California. However, as in other states, many growers are
hesitant to adopt conservation tillage practices because of concerns of weed species shifts
and associated crop yield reductions.”
Another issue driven by environmental concerns is the phaseout of methyl bromide
use from agriculture worldwide. Methyl bromide has successfully provided broad-spectrum
control of many pests, including weeds.
The UC IPM Program has joined forces with representatives from several disciplines
including pest management, engineering, soil science, horticulture, and agronomy, to search
for efficient and cost-effective alternatives to methyl bromide. Anil is a team member of a
USDA-funded project and collaborates in several studies with USDA-ARS scientists, UC
Davis specialists, and walnut and almond growers in the San Joaquin and Sacramento
valleys. He has been evaluating the efficacy of several alternative fumigants on weed control.
UC IPM promotes IPM practices for cities in the South Coast
Water is important to the growing southern California population. We drink it, boat, swim, and surf
in it, and use it to keep our home and recreational areas looking good. However, we also use pesticides
and fertilizers to maintain the quality of these landscaped areas, and these products are often moved
off site in surface runoff.
As part of a project to train staff in local municipalities about the effects of pesticide and fertilizer
overuse, Area IPM Advisor Cheryl Wilen worked with UC Watershed Advisor Darren Haver and
Environmental Horticulture Advisor John Kabashima in Orange County. This core group developed
training modules on general benefits of IPM and how to transition into an IPM program. They also trained
city personnel and contractors about pesticide safety and use, and accurate pest identification and benefits
of biological control.
Advisors involved in this ongoing project are developing additional training modules to address other
components needed to successfully implement an IPM program. To make the programs successful, the advisors
worked with the County of Orange Stormwater Division, Santa Ana Regional Water Quality Control Board,
California Department of Pesticide Regulation, and individual cities to form collaborative working groups
to improve water quality by implementing effective IPM systems.
UC IPM co-sponsors Education Day for retail nursery personnel
For the fourth year, the UC Statewide IPM Program co-sponsored a Healthy California Landscapes Education
Day for retail nursery store employees, master gardeners, and others who advise consumers on horticulture
and garden pest management questions.
More than 115 people attended the program on the UC Davis campus in August. The conference showcased
tours of the nearby UC Davis Arboretum and the Department of Environmental Horticulture. Hands-on demonstrations
by UC Cooperative Extension scientists featured methods for pruning young trees and a diagnostic session
that included examples of damage from more than 80 different pest and environmental problems on landscape
plants. Speakers presented talks on landscape designs and techniques that reduce irrigation runoff or
improve water quality, tips for maintaining healthy lawns, and new plants for Mediterranean climates.
Presenters included Steve Dreistadt and Mary Louise Flint (UC IPM Program); Richard
Evans, Linda Dodge, and Loren Oki (UC Davis Department of Environmental Horticulture); Pam
Geisel, Ali Harivandi, Chuck Ingels, Bethallyn Black, and Mario Moratorio (UC
Cooperative Extension horticultural advisors); Ellen Zagory, Emily Griswold, and Ryan
Deering (UC Davis Arboretum). The program was cosponsored by the California Association of Nurseries
and Garden Centers and UC Cooperative Extension, along with UC IPM.
New IPM-based tools soon available for UCCE and school groups
Master gardener coordinators, horticultural advisors, and school employees will soon have
new tools to use in their outreach, education, and training programs. UC IPM is creating a
series of interactive presentations that will be used not only for educating school employees,
but also the general public. In response to increasing interest in reducing pesticide use in
urban environments, these presentations will help get the IPM message out to the public and
provide science-based solutions for common pest problems.
Ant management and IPM for weeds are the first two presentations being developed. The
20-minute ants program contains more than 70 illustrations and photographs, plus five video
clips. A script accompanies the PowerPoint presentation, but a narrated video version is also
available. Identification tips, biology and food preferences, and environmentally sound
management strategies are highlighted. The approach to ant management stresses relying
on sanitation and exclusion in combination with baiting as needed, while avoiding
insecticide sprays that can cause health or environmental problems. The program also
describes how to use baits most effectively.
A presentation on integrated pest management for weeds is expected to be completed in
A novel component of this outreach project is the crafting of interactive scenarios to
stimulate discussion among the audience following the presentation. Presenters will be
trained to use these tools to reinforce key points in the presentation. Handouts and posters
created for each topic will complete the educational package.
Cheryl Reynolds, IPM Education and Publications, is producing the programs with input
from numerous UC advisors, specialists, and master gardener coordinators, as well as school
grounds maintenance managers. Funding is from USDA, California Department of Pesticide
Regulation, and the UC Slosson Endowment.
Working with NRCS/USDA to incorporate IPM into conservation planning
The Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS)
is a branch of the USDA that assists
landowners with conserving their soil,
water, and other natural resources by
providing technical and financial assistance.
In the 2002 Farm Bill, NRCS was charged
to promote adoption of new pest
management practices and IPM programs
that would reduce environmental problems
associated with pest management. The new
program includes establishment of an NRCS
Pest Management Standard, incorporation of
pest management goals into funded NRCS
conservation plans, and training and
certification of NRCS staff in pest
In 2003-2004, $47 million were available to
California growers participating in the
NRCS’s new Environmental Quality
Incentives Program (EQIP) to implement
new pest management, nutrient
management, and soil erosion or water/
irrigation management practices that would
protect the environment.
The UC IPM Program is partnering with
the California NRCS office to provide tools
and training to assist NRCS staff, growers,
Technical Service Providers and PCAs in
identifying and implementing effective and
environmentally sound pest management
A major part of our contribution involves
the enhancement of the UC IPM Pest
Management Guidelines (PMGs) database
on the UC IPM Web site to provide quick
and reliable information about problem
pesticides and alternatives that will meet
NRCS conservation requirements. These
- Year-round IPM plans that identify the
major activities growers need to be doing
at each crop growing/development
period to implement a comprehensive
- The UC IPM WaterTox database, which is
linked to every PMG, giving a quick readout
of water quality concerns for every
- Annual crop-specific checklists and
monitoring forms that provide a readymade
format for documentation for
growers seeking to get their IPM
programs considered for NRCS programs.
Year-round IPM programs are available on
the UC IPM Web site for prunes, almonds and
cotton. Plans for many other crops
including plums, grapes, alfalfa, strawberries,
avocado, peaches, and nectarines will be
completed over the next year.
A second area of contribution is
training. UC IPM sponsored two two-day
training programs for more than 40 NRCS
staff at UC Davis on Oct. 12 and 13 and at
CSU Fresno on Oct. 27 and 28, 2004. The
training gave participants a background in
pest management and IPM and
demonstrated how they can use the UC IPM
Web-based tools as they work with growers
to develop conservation plans.
included lectures by IPM advisors and
academic staff, break-out groups with UCCE
advisors to brainstorm IPM alternatives, and
hands-on training with computers to test out
the new online year-round IPM plan tools
that have been created for this program.
NRCS staff also gave presentations on the
new Pest Management Standard, EQIP and
NRCS’s WIN-PST database of pesticides and
water quality issues.
This training will be
repeated next year for additional NRCS staff
and will be part of NRCS’s requirements for
staff certification in the area of pest
management in California.
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