Growers Attending Biocontrols East Conference Got a First-Hand Look at Others’ Hands-On Experience

Greenhouse growers attending the Biocontrols East Conference in Orlando, FL, October 11-13, got a real-life look at how biocontrols can be successfully implemented into production during the greenhouse breakout session, a two-hour course with three talks focusing on integrated pest management (IPM) in a controlled environment.

Integrating Predatory Mites With Miticides in Greenhouse Production

The first talk, “Biocontrol: The Grower’s Perspective,” was a tag team effort by Chris Schlegel, Head Grower at young plant producer D.S. Cole Growers in New Hampshire, and Carol Glenister, Founder, IPM Laboratories. The two women work together often on IPM strategies and discussed how D.S. Cole Growers has integrated predatory mite release with chemical controls to control spider mites, thrips, fungus gnats, and whiteflies.

“We were throwing every beneficial we could at white flies, and then we started applying pollen for swirskii population,” Schlegel said. “It cost a lot less to blow pollen around a greenhouse. But timing is everything – it has to be fresh to feed the population.”

Microbials Are Your Friends…With Benefits

Next, Bioworks’ Technical Sales Manager Chris Hayes walked the group through the dos and don’ts of using microbes as biocontrol agents to control insects and pathogens. In his lively presentation, “Micro Friends with Macro Benefits,” aimed at helping growers gain a better understanding of microbials and what they should be asking their biocontrols suppliers, Hayes outlined how microbials work, how to use them effectively as a preventative versus a curative, and tips for using microbes with traditional chemicals.

“Speed is important, since it needs to out-perform the pathogen,” Hayes said. “Some fungi attack other fungi. Some are just bullies that outperform. If you’re going to use a biological, use the appropriate one. Make sure they will work in your environment. If will grow only in your soil, look at the environment, and look at compatibility with not only your chemicals, but all your other inputs, including your water source.”

Aphidius and You – Managing Aphids With Parasitic Wasps

In the final session of the day, Grower Rich Densel of Van Vugt Greenhouses based in New Jersey shared his practical knowledge on how to use the Aphidius family of parasitic wasps in an effective greenhouse IPM program. For more than 10 years, Densel has been using the Aphidius banker system to control aphids on a wide number of common greenhouse crops. He revealed some trade secrets on scouting for aphids, successfully raising Aphidius using an aphid banker plant system, how to deal with hot spots, and best practices for integrating insecticides with Aphidius for comprehensive pest control.

“One way to look for aphids, is to use the sparrows in the greenhouse – if they’re pecking away in a certain spot, you may find aphids there,” Densel said. “I thought one bay was completely clean, but I noticed the sparrows were eating there and I found them. Luckily, the Aphidius were already parasitizing them, so there was no reason to get an itchy finger and spray. If you have a hot spot, there are several things you can do – let Aphidius do its job, remove the plants and quarantine them, release lacewing larvae, or spot spray or drench – but keep Aphidius in mind. Compatible doesn’t equal harmless – be sure to keep spray to a minimum to reduce damage to your investment in the wasps.”

Join Greenhouse Grower and Meister Media Worldwide at the Biocontrols West Conference, March 7-9 in San Diego, CA. Stay tuned to the Biocontrols Conference website for more details on the event and location.


Leave a Reply

One comment on “Growers Attending Biocontrols East Conference Got a First-Hand Look at Others’ Hands-On Experience

More From Biocontrols Conference...
Dallas Johnson Greenhouses

April 14, 2018

Kemin Forms Distribution Partnership With Plant Products

Under the agreement, Plant Products will be a Kemin Crop Technologies’ distributor in the northeastern U.S.

Read More

April 13, 2018

Dümmen Orange Debuts New Rooting Technology

Basewell bare-root cuttings feature advanced root development and no growing media, which allows products to ship to growers from off-shore production locations, ready to transplant directly into the finish container.

Read More

April 10, 2018

New Tool Helps Greenhouse Growers Analyze Irrigation Water Quality

The University of Connecticut and University of Florida have partnered to launch the WaterQual tool as part of the CleanWateR3 research program.

Read More
Latest Stories

March 13, 2018

Greenhouse Biocontrol Goes Mainstream

Biological control has moved into the mainstream for greenhouse growers. And the timing couldn’t be better, as consumer demands for more sustainable production methods for the plants they buy are moving back upstream.

Read More
Adult Thrips feature

February 20, 2018

Thrips Causing Headaches? New Research Shows Bio-based …

Dr. Rose Buitenhuis will present practical knowledge for growers to implement immediately during Biocontrols West Conference in San Diego, March 7-9.

Read More
Oat Grass Banker System feature

February 8, 2018

Learn the Basics of Biocontrols for Controlled Environm…

Growers producing crops in protected structures, including ornamentals, vegetable crops, and cannabis, can learn about effective sanitation, banker plants, and buying and using beneficials and predatory insects at the Biocontrols USA West Conference in San Diego, March 3-7.

Read More
Adult Thrips feature

February 6, 2018

Biocontrol Track for Greenhouse Growers Reveals New Pro…

The Biocontrols West USA Conference in San Diego March 7-9 offers greenhouse growers practical knowledge on new research findings and an energetic presentation from a grower who’s taking her customers along on her biocontrols journey.

Read More

January 23, 2018

Cannabis Producers to Learn Biocontrols Basics During H…

Registration for Biocontrols Conference USA West, which takes place March 7-9 in San Diego, is now open. The event features in-depth educational sessions, expert advice on new products, a tour that showcases how growers are using biocontrols in their own operations, and a post-conference workshop.

Read More
Botrytis Symptoms on Leaves

January 23, 2018

Jim Faust to Present Research on Biocontrol for Botryti…

Registration for Biocontrols USA West, which takes place March 7-9 in San Diego, is now open. The event features in-depth educational sessions, expert advice on new products, and tours that showcase how growers are using biocontrols in their own operations.

Read More

January 22, 2018

Don’t Miss Opportunities to Market Your Biocontro…

Our industry can do a better job of spreading the word to customers and the public about how we’re using biopesticides and other biocontrols.

Read More
Parisitic Wasp Aphidius colemani

November 7, 2017

Growers Attending Biocontrols East Conference Got a Fir…

The greenhouse breakout during the Biocontrols East Conference provided real life, hands on experience to attendees, from a grower’s perspective.

Read More
Biocontrols West 2017 Trade Show

March 7, 2017

Biocontrols Conference Offers Education, New Product Up…

The Biocontrols USA West 2017 Conference and Expo, held March 1-3 in Reno, NV, highlighted the high level of integration biocontrol is now experiencing among specialty crop growers.

Read More

October 30, 2016

Save The Date For The Third Annual Biocontrols 2017 Con…

Learn about the latest biocontrol products, technologies, and techniques March 2-3, 2017 in Reno, NV, at this year’s conference, presented by Meister Media Worldwide in conjunction with the Biopesticide Industry Alliance.

Read More
Travis Higginbotham

April 18, 2016

Biocontrols Conference Highlights Critical Role Of Inte…

The Biocontrols USA 2016 Conference & Expo highlighted the increasing integration of biological controls as a useful component in your integrated pest management programs.

Read More
Travis Higginbotham

February 8, 2016

Biocontrols And Next-Generation Production

Biocontrols are becoming much more established in greenhouse production. In some cases, it’s the next generation of growers that’s helping to support the adoption of this next generation of pest control. Travis Higginbotham, R&D Manager for Battlefield Farms, in Rapidan, VA, is a great example. Brought on in 2014, he is helping Battlefield take the next step in product development, as well as become more efficient as a business and adapt to new technologies and demands from their customers with a more proactive approach. Higginbotham will share information on Battlefield’s nematode program at the Biocontrols USA 2016 Conference and Expo, March 3-4, 2016 in Monterey, CA. We asked him about the details involved with building a new biocontrols program, as well as the future of sustainability in greenhouse production. Q: What are the differences in costs involved in using biocontrols? What costs should growers consider, aside from the hard costs […]

Read More
Biocontrols Conference and Expo 2016

February 4, 2016

Biocontrols 2016 Conference Offers Insights And Learnin…

The Biocontrols 2016 Conference & Expo, which takes place March 3-4, 2016, in Monterey, CA, brings together growers, pest control advisers, suppliers, researchers, and other segments of the industry to share the latest information on biochemicals, microbial pesticides, and beneficials, and help you put biocontrols to work in your operation.

Read More