Tarnished plant bug

Asked July 17, 2018, 12:20 PM EDT

I have a home garden with small market sales. My first harvest this year - tarnished plant bug a major problem in strawberries, reaching 100 percent damage now. Have done some research and read your recommends and have a few questions. My garden is organic, not certified.

Where is a source for commercial non-ultra-violet reflecting white sticky traps? I've considered making my own traps with Tanglefoot but wonder about the need for the non-ultra-violet part? Beauveria bassiana - I have a native planting of forbs and grasses around the garden - would this fungus spread from my garden and harm the many beneficials and butterflies etc. in my planting?

How should sticky traps be placed and oriented and is there a way to limit damage to beneficials? Are the specie of tarnished plant bugs in my strawberries specific to damaging that crop only or should I look for damage in my other berries and crops? If I was to mow my native planting around my garden, would several feet or yards be of benefit or not so much? When can and should kaolin spray be used and stopped and the same for garlic - when to start and when to stop as as not to affect berry flavor.

As an aside, are white flies found in my area - Chippewa County, 4 miles southeast of Pickford?

Thanks Terry

Chippewa County Michigan

4 Responses

A great Michigan source for IPM supplies in Great Lakes IPM. https://www.greatlakesipm.com/

Tarnished plant bugs are generalists and feed on the flowers, seed heads and fruits of many plants. Traps are used to monitor for the presence of the insect and guide management decisions not for control. Place the traps around the edge of the planting and one in the interior.

As for sprays of Beauveria bassiana affecting beneficial insects it is possible depending on what strain of fungus you use but unlikely. Specific strains of the fungus are used for certain types of insects so a strain that was effective on mosquitoes would have little effect on moths and caterpillars . It is the same with Bacillus Thuringiensis (Bt) where most strains are effective against caterpillar pest but not dangerous to other insects. There are Bt strains for beetles and mosquitoes. All these have little effect on other different insects.
Since these material need to be sprayed on the plants of protect them off target injury is unlikely.

Kaolin clay and garlic extract are used a repellents and need to be reapplied as the wash off or deteriorate. I am not sure if garlic is a good choice for berry crops.
Kaolin is typically used at about 50#/A to completely cover the plants and then need to be washed off.
If you are growing berries you will need to control SWD. There is information on organic SWD recommendations at the SWD page.

As to my question about where to purchase commercial white sticky traps - where can they be purchased? Additionally what is the reason for non-ultra-violet paper - I assume it must have something to do with either repelling or attracting TPB. Does that exclude making my own sticky traps with Tanglefoot? I have tried yellow sticky traps with little success.



What source do you recommend for the fungus that would be specific to TPB?


Great Lakes IPM sells white sticky traps for TPB.

I do not have a source for a TPB specific fungus.
For people interested in biological controls I generally suggest they start looking at Koppert https://www.koppertus.com/
I looked at their resources for strawberries and did not find TPB but they had materials for other pests and diseases in strawberries including white flies.
They have materials for many pests and crops so you might see if they other materials you might be interested in.

All I can do is suggest you search the internet looking for the resources you need.