Flea beetles are a common crop pest of crucifers in Ontario and overwinter as adults near the soil surface in debris and stubble from the previous crop. They typically become active with the first extended period of warm weather in the early spring as the leaf litter begins to thaw. The beetles feed on weeds throughout the field and have the ability to fly on calm days and will attack brassica seedlings as they emerge or transplants as they are planted.
Females will begin laying eggs in soil for about 30 days. Flea beetle larvae will hatch from eggs 12 days later and feed on the root hairs and taproots of seedlings. Left unchecked, adults will feed on leaves of transplants and the larvae will burrowing into the plant near the juncture of the root and stem. Continue reading Preventing Yield Loss from Flea Beetles→
Field peppers are susceptible to a number of pests and disorders that can lead to fruit rots. This can make managing rots quite difficult. This article outlines some key points to understand about the variety of pests, disorders, and contributing factors that lead to fruit rots. Continue reading Pepper fruit rots→
The 66th Annual Muck Vegetable Growers Conference will be held April 12-13 at the Bradford and District Memorial Community located at 125 Simcoe St., Bradford, ON. The conference is free and registration starts at 8:30. For more details please see: http://www.uoguelph.ca/muckcrop/muckconference.html
Vegetable and fruit growers should be on the look-out for signs of stink bugs in their fields and orchards. In the last few weeks, we have visited apple orchards in Niagara with fruit showing damage that is characteristic of stink bugs (Figures 1-4). Early injury is easy to overlook (Figures 5 & 6). We have also seen injury in tomatoes (Figure 7-8). Continue reading Stink Bug Alert!→
Pepper weevil is a pest that is likely unfamiliar to most Ontario field pepper growers. It has been found in Ontario previously (https://onvegetables.com/2010/06/01/pepper-weevil/) and there have been reports of its presence in 2016. As it can be a very serious pest of peppers, it is advisable for all pepper growers to monitor for the pest in their crop. Pepper weevil can affect both field and greenhouse pepper crops, but this article will focus on scouting and management in the field.
Adults are small weevils, 2-3.5 mm in length (Figures 1 and 2).
Difficult to detect the pepper weevil adults through crop scouting if it is present at low levels
(unless using pheromone traps).
Eggs are laid in the fruit wall, leaving a dimpled scar (Figure 3).
Larvae grow and develop inside the pepper fruit; pupae form inside the fruit (Figure 4).
New adults create an exit hole and leave the fruit.
Dennis Van Dyk, OMAFRA, Guelph; Manju Chandran and Mary Ruth McDonald, University of Guelph, Muck Crops Research Station.
For the first time in Ontario, feeding damage caused by flea beetle larvae has been confirmed in a commercial carrot field. The damage is characterized by irregularly shaped cavities along the length of the taproot (Figure 1). A trail of smaller feeding sites can sometimes be seen travelling down the length of the carrot (Figure 2).