Vegetable Crops News

Broad Mite Control on Greenhouse Peppers with Predatory Mite

The broad mite is a serious pest of pepper, tomato, cucumber, eggplant, basil and other crops in greenhouses. Weekly releases of the predatory mite Neoseiulus barkeri have successfully controlled this mite on many vegetables and herbs in greenhouses at The Land (EPCOT Center, Florida) for more than 3 years. In cage experiments on peppers, releasing 10 or more predatory mites per plant effectively reduced the broad mite population from more than 100 mites per leaf to zero in a week. Three consecutive weekly releases of 5 N. barkeri per main stem protected pepper plants from broad mite injury for at least 7 weeks. The predatory mites may also provide some control of western flower thrips at the same time. Additional studies are necessary to determine accurate release rates and timing under large scale greenhouse conditions.

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