UCCE solutions for invasive pest problem on popular landscape plant
Increased damage casued by the myoporum thrips on Myoporum Laetum.
What Has ANR Done?David Shaw and Jim Bethke of UCCE San Diego County have been working in cooperation with local commercial landscapers and the San Diego County Agricultural Commissioner’s office in an effort to identify solutions to the thrips problem. Although their research shows that at least one beneficial insect — the minute pirate bug — was present, it was not there in sufficient numbers to impact the thrips population. Shaw and Bethke conducted a series of management trials at various sites, including such well-known sites as the Del Mar Racetrack, to determine whether specific management methods could be used to control the pest and encourage plant recovery in the landscape.
Research-based studies improve knowledge base and management of Myoporum thripsThrough research-based studies by UCCE, the biology of the insect is better known. Several management methods, including some low-impact pesticides and application techniques, were identified as effective against Myoporum thrips and able to be used in the landscape with minimal impact on beneficial insects and the environment. Treated plants showed excellent recovery from severely gnarled terminal growth. Trials were conducted on heavy populations in the summer so they were curative in nature. This information has been made available via trade magazines, allowing landscapers and pest control advisors to benefit from the research. Armed with this research-based information, growers and landscapers can provide their customers with a high-quality specialty commodity that will protect Myoporum so it may continue its important roles in erosion control.
Clientele Testimonial"Thank you for the research on the Myoporum. We are following the same program you laid out in your research with good results on controlling the thrips we were having such a big issue with. The research you did has directly resulted in a positive response from the Myoporum and saved the hedges in our chute." - Leif Dickinson, Turf & Landscape Superintendent, Del Mar Thoroughbred Club
Supporting Unit:San Diego North County Office James A. Bethke and David A. Shaw
James A. Bethke, 951-775-7172, firstname.lastname@example.org