Science into practice controlling aphids in protected lettuce

Glasshouse lettuce is prone to colonisation by aphids, which can become established quickly. Visual detection can be difficult until the populations are already quite large.

Previous HDC-funded projects focused on identifying the key pest species involved and looked at alternative methods of control, primarily by introducing physical and biological approaches to reduce the use of insecticides on the crop.

However, the industry is still faced with increasing aphid problems along with decreasing pesticide availability, poor product selection, incorrect timing or method(s) of application, insecticide resistance and cultural or environmental change. HDC project PC 290 aimed to identify products that could contribute to aphid control programmes for protected lettuce and has demonstrated the efficacy of several new products.

Two seed treatments and two foliar sprays were effective in controlling the lettuce aphids Nasonovia ribisnigri and Aulacorthum solani. Two entomopathogenic fungi treatments also provided a high level of aphid control. The final report is available to download from the HDC website.

Coming up

HDC hardy nursery stock panel meeting, London, 1 December. HDC field vegetable panel meeting, Stilton, 2 December. HDC tree fruit panel meeting, East Malling, 15 December.

New release

Green manures fact sheet series: 24/10 Effects on soil nutrient management and soil and physical biological properties; 25/10 Species selection; 26/10 Implications of economic and environmental benefits on rotational management.

Horticultural Development Company

For details on all HDC activities, visit www.hdc.org.uk.


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