On Thursday, February 18, 2021 as part of an OSU/WSU webinar, Stijn van Laer gave a talk on pear psylla management in northern European pear orchards. Stijn is a crop consultant that works for company called FruitConsult based in Belgium. They are a private consulting firm that does not sell products (i.e., chemicals), just management recommendations. Stijn discussed management of pear psylla in European orchards with conservation biological control (i.e., only using soft insecticides and at economic thresholds) and by augmentation of earwigs. He also discussed the importance of proper sprayer calibration and how this can make or break effective management.
Pear Psylla IPM: Strategies and New Research (2021 Pear Day)
Miss the virtual 2021 WSU Tree Fruit Days in January? No worries, Louie Nottingham’s webinar on Pear IPM is available any time. Here, Louie discusses key components to successful pear IPM programs and his latest research results.
Louis Nottingham and Robert Orpet wrote an article in the February 2021 edition of ‘Tree Fruit News’ reminding growers to start preparing dormant sprays of kaolin clay (Surround) to deter pear psylla colonization in the orchard. A dormant Surround spray will provide the first line of defense to keep psylla from entering your orchard. The optimal time to make this first Surround application depends on weather, but here is a good rule of thumb: if it is warm and dry enough for you to safely spray, go for it – psylla are probably colonizing your orchard!
Pear psylla, Cacopsylla pyricola (Förster), has remained the most challenging pest of commercial pears in Washington and Oregon, the top producers of pears in the United States. The lack of effective integrated pest management tactics for this pest has been a major barrier to effective management. In this study, we examined the potential for reflective plastic mulch affixed beneath pear trees to suppress pear psylla. In 2017 and 2018, single pear tree (cv. Bartlett) plots of reflective plastic mulch, black plastic mulch, and no mulch (check) were established in a research orchard to compare their effects on pear psylla.