Control of insects on landscape plants

By The Old House Web

Control of insects on landscape plants

You can maintain healthy trees and shrubs and prevent insect problems in many ways. Utilizing as many practical management strategies as possible is called integrated pest management (IPM). Some of the more widespread insect management strategies include cultural practices, natural or biological control, host plant resistance, and insecticide or miticide management. Several types of insecticides and miticides, such as horticultural spray oils and microbial insecticides, are compatible with other IPM strategies designed to maximize natural control. Consider all of the following strategies when you decide what strategies to implement to control a particular insect problem.

The first step in a sound landscape management program is proper identification of the pest problem. Insects found on a sick-looking tree may have nothing to do with the problem. At the same time, it may be difficult to find some serious insect pests, such as borers and root weevils. When insects are suspected of damaging the leaves, stems or roots of a plant, they should be properly identified by a reliable source. Most insects can be preserved in rubbing alcohol and carried in a small bottle to your local garden center or the Cooperative Extension Service office in your county. Once you know the proper identity of the insect, you can get more information on the life cycle and biology from the Extension Service or the library. An excellent source of information and color photographs of tree and shrub insects is the book "Insects that Feed on Trees and Shrubs", Comstock Publishing Associates, Cornell University Press, Ithaca, NY, 1970, by Warren T. Johnson and Howard H. Lyon.

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