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Integrated Pest Management (IPM)

 

What is Integrated Pest Management?

  • IPM is a process to solve pest problems while minimizing risks to people and the environment. It focuses on long-term prevention of pests by managing the ecosystem. 

    • Cultural IPM practices:

      • Proper selection and maintenance of plants. Use resistant varieties, proper fertilization, proper irrigation, crop rotation, and insect barrier fabric.

      • Determine your level of tolerance. Is the insect damage reducing yield or a major detraction in your landscape?

      • Scout your garden often. Examine upper and lower leaf surfaces, as well as the soil, for eggs, larva, and adults. Hand picking mild infestations may be enough to control the pest.

    • Biological IPM practices:

      • Encourage beneficial insects. They are natural enemies of pests.

      • Use trap crops. Lure bad bugs away from your crop, such as growing sunflowers to attract leaf-foot bugs.

    • Chemical IPM practices:

      • Should be considered the last resort, as you do not want to disturb pollinators or beneficial insects. Always follow the label instructions carefully.

      • Start with natural products and spot treat the specific plant to target the pest you want to control. Most chemicals are not selective, so good bugs may be destroyed along with the bad bugs.

    The UF/IFAS Integrated Pest Management Website

    EDIS IPM Publications

    Integrated Pest Management Control Strategies

    FDACS Suspicious Seed Submission Form