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Pest Management

Figure 8. Dodder, when left uncontrolled, tends to spread farther and farther outward, smothering host plants. When this occurs, host plants are further weakened by multiple vines with penetrating haustoria and an increase in shade caused by dense vine growth. Source: www.gardeningknowhow.com

  

Dodder, a Parasitic Vine Weed

By Bruce Wenning

Not all plant diseases are caused by parasitic microbes, some are caused by parasitic weeds.  The dodder vine is one of those weeds.  Dodder attaches itself to healthy plants and makes them more vulnerable to other diseases and insect pests. Find out all about the dodder lifecycle and best practices for ridding your landscape of this fascinating but noxious vine.

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As any gardener will know, keeping flowers looking beautiful can take some effort. Learning how to identify and understand the natural history of pests is an important step in managing them without chemicals. (Photo: Eric Lee-Mäder.)
 

How to Identify and Respond to Pests at Home

By Emily May

One of the most fulfilling aspects of spending most of my time at home over the past few months has been watching the flowers in my yard blossom and buzz with bees, flies, butterflies, hummingbirds, and more. I also notice when things go awry, like when I spotted deformed flower heads on my bee balm (Monarda fistulosa) and later on my purple coneflower (Echinacea purpurea). What was going on and what could I do about it without the use of harmful pesticides which pose risk to both humans and insects alike. 

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Xylocopa_Latreille carpenter-bee one of the largest native bees in the United States 

Carpenter Bees at Work in Home and Garden

By Karen Boussolini 

Bees are smart. They recognize high-quality food and habitat. The buzz has gone out that my house is a happening place for carpenter bees. In a quest to rid my house of carpenter bees, understand their life cycle, and find alternatives that don’t involve them eating my house I discovered some simple steps to save both my house and these gentle beneficial insects. 

 

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praying-mantis-1170776_1920 

Pray for the Prey of the Praying Mantis

by Bud Reaves, Anne Arundel Forestry Board

Mantises are one of the most ferocious predators in the animal kingdom. Able to capture and kill prey much larger than themselves, they have adapted into efficient, ruthless hunters and are valuable in the control of insect pests; however, exotic mantises may do more harm than good where they become too numerous

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Spotted Lanternfly (Lycorma delicatula)

The spotted lanternfly is a non-native sap-feeding planthopper also known as the lanternmoth. The first sighting of the spotted lanternfly in the United States was in Berks County, Pennsylvania in 2014. In 2017 a single individual was found in Delaware in November and a few days later in New York. January 2018,…

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Managing Land for Pollinators and Conservation Biocontrol

by Emily May Conservation biological control is a science-based pest management strategy that seeks to integrate beneficial insects back into the landscape for natural pest control, ultimately reducing and in some cases eliminating the need for pesticides. Farm landscapes can provide food and shelter for pollinators and other beneficial insects, boosting populations of these insects…

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Is There Hope for Growing Lilies in New England Again?

by Lisa Tewksbury In the early 1990s New England acquired a new pest of lilies from Europe, the lily leaf beetle (Lilioceris lilii), which made growing lilies to their full potential almost impossible. The adult is a beautiful red beetle, but the immature stage is a larva that can defoliate lily leaves and has the…

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Drought and Pests

by Heather Faubert Two general statements about droughts, insects, and diseases hold true: Most plant-feeding insects tend to survive very well under drought conditions. Plant diseases are not very troublesome during droughts. All insects can acquire various fungal disease and these diseases generally need high humidity. Similarly, most plant diseases need rain or at least…

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Rose Insect Pest Alert: The Roseslug Sawfly, Hymenoptera: Tenthredinidae

by Bruce Wenning Sawfly insects are in the order Hymenoptera that includes bees, ants, wasps, parasitic wasps, and sawflies. Metamorphosis is complete: egg, larva, pupa, adult (Borror, Triplehorn and Johnson, 1989). Sawfly larvae differ from larvae in the order Lepidoptera (butterflies and moths) by lacking noticeable body hairs, having a well-developed head, and possessing more…

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