Wayne County IPM Notes from July 26 – July 30

Agronomic Crops

Now is the time to scout for stink bugs in corn and soybean fields. At this time, the corn we are scouting is between the R1 and R3 stage. Soybeans are consistently around R1 and R2. Stink bugs can cause kernel damage in corn and pod damage in soybeans. Scouting along field edges will help you find stink bug populations, as they begin infesting fields from the edges and work their way inward.

In our scouting of sunflowers, our IPM team found what we determined to be bacterial stalk rot of sunflower. The stalks were very easy to push over, raising concern for lodging. The center of the stalk, about a third of the way up the plant, had become very soft, rotten, and thus lost all structural integrity. Unfortunately, there is nothing that can be done this year about the stalk rot, however, a rotation of at least 4 years away from sunflower, combined with good weed control, can help to break up the disease cycle and prevent any residue or other plant species from over wintering the pathogen.

Vegetable Crops

Septoria leaf blight is beginning to work its way up tomato plants in the area. This fungal foliar disease, over time, can result in significant loss of foliage and over all a reduction in productivity and longevity of the plant.

Cucurbits are facing a lot of disease challenges right now, including powdery mildew, downy mildew on cucumbers and cantaloupe, and plectosporium. While we consistently see both the mildews, plectosporium can be a little more sporadic and when it occurs, it can cause significant yield loss if left uncontrolled.

The only major issues we have identified this week in terms of insect pests was the continuation of flea beetles feeding on very young cole crop transplants. Make sure you do not allow flea beetle populations to get out of hand.

Small Fruit and Orchards

Codling moth activity has increased in many of the orchard where we have traps set. Overall, though, the apple crop looks very abundant and healthy this year. In peaches, we have started finding spots of bird damaged fruit, as well as damage from Japanese beetles. Our IPM program has put out a SWD trap in some peaches to keep an eye on the SWD populations in peach blocks. In small fruits, Japanese beetles continue to be the main pest of concern as the season begins to wind down. In grapes, we did find some grape berry moth adults in our traps and encourage anyone with grapes to keep an eye out for the grape berry moth adult, or damage to the grapes from the larva.

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