Gardening - Fruit: Pests & Diseases
Insect infestations reduce yields and lower the quality of harvested garden vegetables. Three to seven generations of many insect pests attack garden vegetables during the growing season. All plant parts may be injured by insects. Some insects bore into roots, seeds or stems. Many suck large quantities of plant sap. Others destroy crops by chewing on the succulent foliage, stems or fruits. Plant diseases are carried by certain insects.
Safe, effective and economical control measures can minimize the loss from insects. Control can be maintained all season by a combination of cultural practices, mechanical control, biological control and chemical applications. To maintain control, follow these practices, as they apply to the vegetables in your garden:
• Anticipate insect pest problems.
• Remove other vegetation and debris that harbor insects from vegetable garden beds.
• Turn under spent plants when the vegetables have been harvested.
• Inspect plants regularly for insect infestations and spray when needed.
• Apply sprays when the young, most vulnerable stages of insect pests are beginning to hatch or emerge.
• Observe use restrictions and avoid applying insecticide on garden vegetables within the minimum number of days between last application and harvest.
• Select insecticides that take a short time to control insects during the harvest period.
"PB595-You Can Control Garden Insects," The University of Tennessee Agricultural Extension Service, PB595-1M-4/06(Rev) E12-4615-00-010-06 06-0253, http://trace.tennessee.edu/utk_agexgard/8