Potato Grower

May 2021

Issue link: https://read.uberflip.com/i/1363666

Contents of this Issue


Page 37 of 47

38 POTATO GROWER | MAY 2021 Diggin' In Diggin' In New insecticide from FMC proving effective against CPB, loopers Stopped in Their Tracks INSECTICIDES | Industry Report It used to be that a problem for farm- ers in, say, Colorado would be of little concern to growers in distant locales like the Pacific Northwest. But as the world has gotten smaller, so too has the tendency of producers to ignore the challenges faced by their peers become an irresponsible stance. Take, for instance, the Colorado potato beetle. Long a troublesome — and occasionally devastating — pest east of the Rockies, beetle populations have now become entrenched in the Columbia Basin. The milder tempera- tures in the region compared to most of Idaho's potato-growing country has allowed a significant number of the insects to regularly overwinter, leading to a continually climbing population. In recent years, mild winters have led to increased numbers of volunteer potatoes popping up in rotational crop fields, providing potential homes for beetles that often go untreated. "Idaho doesn't have a huge Colorado potato beetle problem right now," says Kirk Sager, a technical service manager for FMC. "But if we're looking to the future, it's a projection of when, not if, that problem is on the horizon. They're going to show up in Idaho eventually, and the industry there needs to be prepared." Another pest growers are struggling with more and more is cabbage loopers — largely, Sager says, due to neonicoti- noid pesticides' apparently decreasing effectiveness on them. Loopers have also been appearing in potato crops earlier each year, leading to a higher potential of more generations through- out the year. In the fight against both beetles and loopers, Sager is recommending growers begin scouting in their fields as early as possible, and adjusting the timing of their pesticide applications accordingly. "It's best to spray," he says, "not when the initial adults move in, but timing for the egg hatch of the next genera- tion. If you can catch the second half of egg hatch and still get the young beetles and the adults with one appli- cation, you stop population growth. "For loopers," Sager continues, "it's all about scouting. The day after plant- ing, you should start to look for them. There are a million ways to skin a cat, but mine is to treat the crop as soon as you see any moths or caterpillars in order to stop the next generation from coming in." FMC's recently registered Vantacor, Sager says, will be an important weap- on in combating these pests. Vantacor is a diamide formulation that targets Lepidopteran pests and is powered by the company's Rynaxypyr active ingre- dient, which has been on the market for several years. With a low use rate, Vantacor targets key insect pests like Colorado potato beetle and cabbage looper, as well as armyworm and grass- hoppers. Vantacor offers the same pest spectrum and activity as FMC's well- known Prevathon product, but with a much lower use rate, typically 0.7 to 2.0 fluid ounces per acre compared to 14 to 20 fluid ounces per acre. It also offers extended residual control, reducing the need for multiple applications each season. "One of the best things about Vanta- cor is its long residual control of both Cabbage looper larvae on potato leaves. USDA-ARS photo by Peggy Greb FMC's Vantacor insect control offers long residual control of Colorado potato beetle.

Articles in this issue

Archives of this issue

view archives of Potato Grower - May 2021