How to Manage Pests
UC Pest Management Guidelines
Scientific Name: Phytonemus pallidus
(Reviewed 6/08, updated 5/10, corrected 6/14)
In this Guideline:
At low population densities, cyclamen
(Family Tarsonemidae) are usually found along the midvein of young, unfolded
leaves and under the calyx of newly emerged flower buds; when populations
increase, these mites can be found anywhere on nonexpanded plant tissue. They
are not visible to the naked eye, and when mature, they measure only about 0.01
inch (2.5 mm) long. Mature mites are pinkish orange and shiny. The hind legs
are thread- or whiplike in the female and grasping or pincerlike in the male.
Eggs are translucent and comparatively large.
Adult females lay about 90 eggs, 80% of which develop into females.
During summer, newly hatched mites develop into mature adults within 2 weeks.
Populations build rapidly soon after a field becomes infested. Cyclamen mites
overwinter as adult females in the strawberry crown and can be present on
transplants if the nursery field was infested.
Cyclamen mite can be distinguished under magnification from
nondamaging tarsonemid mites in the genus Tarsonemus
by examining the 4th femur of male mites. The cyclamen mite has a
"flange" or distinct bulge present while the males of both Tarsonemus species do not.
Cyclamen mites are primarily pests in fall-planted and second-year
plantings, but they can be transplanted into first-year fields and the damage
symptoms become apparent on leaves as the season progresses. Leaves heavily
infested with cyclamen mites become severely stunted and crinkled, resulting in
in the center of the plant. Feeding on flowers can cause them to wither and
die. Fruit on infested plants is dwarfed, and the seeds stand out on the flesh
of the berry. When uncontrolled, this mite can prevent plants from producing
Management of cyclamen mite requires carefully timed sprays of
miticides that do not harm natural enemy populations. Prevent its introduction
into strawberry fields by following good cultural practices. Propagating
nursery stock free of cyclamen mites is essential to prevent introducing
populations to fruit-producing fields. This mite may survive in furrows of
fields that have been bed fumigated. Because other nondamaging tarsonemid mite
species, including Tarsonemus setifer
and Tarsonemus confusus, occur in
strawberry fields and it is very difficult to distinguish one species from
another, focus control efforts in those fields where damage symptoms occur.
Two naturally occurring predatory mites of cyclamen mite are Typhlodromus bellinus and T. reticulatus, but their populations build
up too slowly to provide economic control. Early season releases of the
commercially available predatory mite, Amblyseius
californicus, may be able to control this pest mite. Amblyseius cucumeris releases have not proven to be effective.
When pest populations become large, the sixspotted
pirate bugs, and western
predatory mite (Galendromus occidentalis) all feed on cyclamen mites.
Cyclamen mites can easily be transferred from one location to
another by pickers, bees, birds, and equipment, including strawberry freezer
trays. It may be worthwhile to dip trays of long-term cold storage (28°F)
transplants into a hot water bath for 7 minutes right before planting to
prevent infestation. (Infested nursery plants are the major source of this pest
in annual plantings; be sure to use uninfested nursery stock.) Prepare plants
for this treatment by thoroughly washing them to remove all dirt; then place
them in a circulating water bath that is held at a constant temperature of
120°F. Afterwards, submerge them in very cold water and then plant them as soon
as possible. (This treatment is not recommended for fresh-dug transplants that
have only been stored at 33°F.) Avoid second-year plantings in problem areas.
To slow the spread of infestations, rogue infested plants as soon as symptoms
Biological and cultural control methods are acceptable for use on
organically certified strawberries.
and Treatment Decisions
If any damage symptoms are observed, be sure to monitor the rest of
the field carefully to determine the extent of the infestation. Monitor newly
unfolding leaves and treat the area of the field, believed to be infested, when
densities of one cyclamen mite in 10 leaves are found. To control cyclamen
mites, a high rate of water per acre (300–500 gal) is necessary to soak
the folded leaves and immature flower buds located in the crowns. Effective
control requires a high rate of kill because populations of this mite can
increase rapidly. Roguing and treating infested hot spots with a hand-sprayer
can be useful in suppressing infestations without having to treat the entire
field. In nurseries, early season control before plant canopy closes over is
||Amount per acre
|(example trade name)
|The following materials are listed in order of usefulness in an IPM program, taking into account efficacy and impact on natural enemies and honey bees. When choosing a
pesticide, also consider information relating to environmental impact. Not all registered pesticides are listed. Always read label of product being used.
||(Agri-Mek 0.15 EC)
||16 fl oz
GROUP NUMBER1: 6
Toxic to predatory mites and relatively toxic to parasites, but fairly safe
for general predators. Apply in up to 600 gal water/acre to soak the material
into the crown of the plant. Works poorly under cold weather conditions. Make
2 applications 7–10 days apart when mites reach detectable levels under
warmer temperatures in late winter or spring. Repeat this sequence of
applications if necessary to maintain cyclamen mite control. Do not exceed 16
fluid oz/acre per application or 64 fl oz (4 applications)/acre in a growing
season. Do not repeat treatment within 21 days of 2nd application. Not registered for strawberry nurseries.
||2.66 pt in 400–600 gal water
GROUP NUMBER1: 2A
Do not reapply within 35 days. Use of this product may not be allowed in some
counties; cannot be applied in any situation where run-off may occur. Consult
county agricultural commissioner for local restrictions. Do not make more
than 2 applications per year or exceed 2 lb a.i./acre per year.
||10.66 fl oz
GROUP NUMBER1: 3
Use of this material is limited to 2 applications owe year (totaling 2.66
pt/acre), but to reduce the pressure for resistance development, make no more than 2 applications of all pyrethroids to the crop each year.
||(Kanemite 15 SC)
||21–31 fl oz
GROUP NUMBER1: 20B
Control does not become evident until 48 to 72 hours after application. Do
not use less than 100 gal water/acre and do not apply more than twice per year.
Allow a minimum of 21 days between treatments. Crops other than strawberries may not be rotated for at least 1year following treatment.
UC IPM Pest Management Guidelines:
UC ANR Publication
Insects and Mites
- F. G. Zalom, Entomology, UC Davis
- M. P. Bolda, UC Cooperative Extension, Santa Cruz County
- S. K. Dara, UC Cooperative Extension, Santa Barbara County
- S. Joseph, UC Cooperative Extension, Monterey County
Acknowledgment for contributions to the Insects and Mites:
- P. A. Phillips, UC IPM Program and UC Cooperative Extension, Ventura County
- N. C. Toscano, Entomology, UC Riverside
Top of page