Craig Adkins, Greg Armel, Matthew Chappell, J.C. Chong, Steven Frank, Amy Fulcher, Frank Hale, William Klingeman III, Kelly Ivors, Anthony LeBude, Joe Neal, Andrew Senesac, Sarah White, Jean Williams-Woodward, Alan Windham
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And an abstract is below.
Plant damage by pests is a predominant source of revenue loss for the nursery industry. In North Carolina, the green industry reported annual losses of $91,000,000 due to insects and diseases (NCDA, 2005). Losses due to plant disease in Georgia in 2007 were estimated to be $43,410,000 for nurseries (Martinez, 2008).
Plant health is an important aspect of Integrated Pest Management (IPM). In many cases, healthy plants experiencing low levels of stress have fewer pest concerns than similar plants experiencing higher stress levels. Stresses can be categorized into biotic and abiotic stresses. Abiotic stresses include the quality of the substrate and its pH, water quality, irrigation timing and quantity, light, temperature, growing area design, mineral nutrient concentrations and availability, and environmental events (e.g., hail and wind). Biotic stresses can be caused by weeds, insects, nematodes, pathogens (e.g., fungi, bacteria, phytoplasmas, oomycetes, and viruses) and vertebrates. Stresses can be cumulative over the production cycle, such that small problems early in production can become larger problems later during time of sale. Identifying and acting, or preventing these stress problems early is the best strategy to maintain plant health. Always try to eliminate which “normal” production practices might contribute to overall poor plant health, while simultaneously identifying and developing practices that improve plant health.
This comprehensive 197 page publication is based on a workshop held in 2009 where nursery crop producers from five states (GA, KY, NC, SC, and TN) identified pest priorities for nursery production. Growers ranked insect, disease, and weed pests prior to meeting as a focus group. This publication was created to serve as a comprehensive resource to identify not only research priorities in the area of pest management; but also important weed, insect and disease control methods.