A STIMULO-DETERRENT METHOD OF THRIPS AND TOMATO SPOTTED WILT VIRUS MANAGEMENT IN TOMATOES
The western flower thrips (Frankliniella occidentalis) is an invasive thrips pest of tomatoes in the southeastern United States. This species causes crop loss to farmers by injuring fruits and vectoring Tomato spotted wilt virus. Previous attempts to control this species using calendar applications of broad-spectrum insecticides were ineffective. A new method of managing various pest insects in various crop systems has been developed: the push-pull or stimulo-deterrent method. The current study tested various combinations of ultraviolet-reflective and black mulches, applications of kaolin clay, and companion plantings of Spanish needle (Bidens alba) for thrips management in tomatoes in North Florida for two growing seasons. Kaolin clay, ultraviolet reflective mulch and companion plantings all reduced the numbers of thrips on the tomato plants. The companion plants attracted higher numbers of a thrips predator (minute pirate bug, Orius insidiosus) to the field than the tomato crop alone. Additionally, ultraviolet-reflective mulch and companion plantings reduced the incidence of Tomato spotted wilt virus in the field. The results of the study show that these combinations can be successfully used in a push-pull method of thrips and thrips-vectored disease management in tomatoes.
Tyler-Julian, K.A., Funderburk, J.E., Olson, S.M., Paret, M.L., Webster, C.G. and Adkins, S. (2015). A STIMULO-DETERRENT METHOD OF THRIPS AND TOMATO SPOTTED WILT VIRUS MANAGEMENT IN TOMATOES. Acta Hortic. 1069, 251-258
thrips, kaolin clay, reflective mulch, companion plants, Orius, push pull