Greenhouse Tomatoes Pest Management

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Many of the insect pests that affect open field tomatoes also attack greenhouse tomatoes. Since the greenhouse has an enclosed and controlled environment, insect management is easier. To achieve the best results in greenhouse pest management, the following should be observed.

  1. Exclusion

This is keeping insects from entering the greenhouse. The most common pests that attack greenhouse tomatoes are small, flying or windborne creatures that can easily enter through openings in the greenhouse. To minimise insect pest damage, it is essential that BUG TIGHT greenhouses are constructed.

  1. Sanitization

Many other pests occur on other crops or broadleaf weeds.

It is important to avoid growing other crops next to the greenhouse and to prevent heavy growths of weeds around and outside the greenhouse?

Not letting weeds and volunteer plants grow inside the greenhouse, either cropping or non-cropping periods is even more important, as such plants can serve as hosts to pests.

  • Insect free transplants are essential in ensuring a sanitary greenhouse.
  • Avoid bringing other plants into the greenhouse once the crop has been planted
  • Keep the greenhouse free of debris, promptly remove pruned leaves and cull overripe fruits.
  1. Scouting

Scouting and early detection are essential to successful pest management. •Purposefully inspect plants once or twice each week to check for developing pest problems. This is done by walking through the greenhouse, making random stops and inspecting both lower and upper leaf surfaces, buds, blooms and fruits to check for pest damage. Extra attention should be given to plants or areas that show unusual appearances or symptoms.

  • Many infestations begin on isolated spots within the greenhouse but spread quickly if not controlled.
  • Be alert for insect pests when performing routine maintenance procedure such as pruning, training or harvesting.
  • A number of pest management tools can be employed as well -yellow sticky cards can help detect white-flies and many other pests early. Pheromone traps are available for tuta absoluta detection and allow for early detection if used accordingly and replace the lure as required.

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