How to Manage Pests

UC Pest Management Guidelines

Grape

Monitoring Caterpillars

(Reviewed 7/15)

In this Guideline:


Grape leaffolder and western grapeleaf skeletonizer feed on foliage and heavy populations can lead to defoliation. Omnivorous leafroller, orange tortrix, and light brown apple moth feed on leaves, flowers, and developing berries, but their primary damage is feeding on fruit which enables rot organisms to enter fruit.

Rapid shoot growth

Early in rapid shoot growth, start monitoring for webbing on leaves caused by omnivorous leafroller, orange tortrix, or light brown apple moth to map out areas of concern for bloom monitoring. Unroll leaves with orange tortrix or light brown apple moth and look for leafroller larva, pupa, or parasite cocoons. Check for leaves skeletonized by western grapeleaf skeletonizer.

Bloom

Plan to treat omnivorous leafroller, grape leaffolder, and western grapeleaf skeletonizer (also, orange tortrix or light brown apple moth in coastal regions), if they have been a problem in the past or if there is no evidence of parasitism. If they haven't been a problem in the past, or if parasitism is present, be sure to monitor flower clusters or leaves for the caterpillars and damage they cause in wine/raisin grapes or in table grapes, as described below, to determine the need for treatment.

After bloom

Monitor during the growing season in wine/raisin grapes or in table grapes, by examining fruit clusters for omnivorous leafroller, orange tortrix, and light brown apple moth and leaves for grape leaffolder and western grape leaf skeletonizer, following the guidelines below. Treatment after veraison for omnivorous leafroller, orange tortrix, and light brown apple moth is limited in effectiveness and not recommended. However, veraison monitoring for all these caterpillars will alert you to larval damage going into harvest and potential problems the following year.

Harvest

At harvest, check fruit clusters for damage by omnivorous leafroller, orange tortrix, and light brown apple moth to assess this year's management program, natural enemy populations, and to plan for next year. Also assess grape leaffolder damage in table grapes.

HOW TO MONITOR

  • Monitor 20 vines weekly by looking at 5 vines in each quadrant of the vineyard.
  • On each vine, check for pests and the damage they cause by following the guidelines below.
  • Record results on a monitoring form (example formPDF)

PROCEDURE AND TREATMENT THRESHOLDS

Caterpillar Procedure Treatment threshold
Omnivorous leafroller
  • Examine 10 flower/fruit clusters in the center of each of 20 vines, for a total of 200 clusters.
  • If you see webbing and frass, look for caterpillars. Note the number of clusters infested with omnivorous leafroller.
  • At bloom, treat if any larvae are found.
  • After bloom, treat if 2 or more clusters are infested.
Orange tortrix (Coastal regions only)
  • From bloom until bunch closure, examine 10 flower/fruit clusters in the center of each of 20 vines, for a total of 200 clusters.
  • If you see webbing and frass, look for caterpillars. Note the number of clusters infested with orange tortrix and the prevalence of parasite cocoons.
  • If you find an average of 0.5-1 larva/vine, treatment may be warranted if parasites are not present.
Grape leaffolder
  • Count the number of rolled leaves per vine.
  • Unroll leaves and look for both healthy and parasitized grape leaffolder larvae.
  • Treatment may be warranted if population levels are increasing. Treat before larvae roll leaves.
Light brown apple moth
  • From bloom until bunch closure, examine 10 flower/fruit clusters in the center of each of 20 vines, for a total of 200 clusters.
  • If you see webbing and frass, look for caterpillars. Caterpillars must be properly identified by the agricultural commissioner's office.
  • From bloom to bunch closure treat if any larvae found is identified as light brown apple moth.
Western grapeleaf skeletonizer
  • If larvae are found and no granulosis virus is evident, treat soon after bloom.

IMPORTANT LINKS

PUBLICATION

[UC Peer Reviewed]

UC IPM Pest Management Guidelines: Grape
UC ANR Publication 3448

General Information

L. G. Varela (Crop Team Leader), UC IPM Program, Sonoma County
W. J. Bentley, UC IPM Program, Kearney Agricultural Research Center, Parlier
D. R. Haviland, UC IPM Program, Kern County
P. A. Phillips, UC IPM Program, Ventura County
R. J. Smith, UC Cooperative Extension Sonoma County
A. Shrestha, UC IPM Program, Kearney Agricultural Center, Parlier

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