Le Réseau BIO

Plate-forme de réseautage pour les producteurs, transformateurs et commerçants d'aliments biologiques du Québec
Le Réseau BioUn site réalisé grâce à un partenariat
CETAB+ | Centre d'expertise et de transfert en agriculture biologique et de proximitéMinistère de l'Agriculture, des Pêcheries et de l'Alimentation du Québec
Bienvenue sur le Réseau BIO, une plate-forme de réseautage pour les producteurs, transformateurs et commerçants d'aliments biologiques et intervenants en agriculture biologique au Québec.

Agrégateur de flux

Organic Tomato Foliar Pathogen IPM Webinar

Join eOrganic for webinar on how to manage foliar pathogens organically! Effectively managing foliar pathogens is one of the biggest challenges facing organic tomato growers. This webinar will provide an overview of practices that can help synergistically address this challenge. Topics will include starting with a strong foundation by building and maintaining soil health, selecting the right varieties, cultural practices that make the environment less favorable for pathogens, disease identification and management using organic fungicides. The webinar takes place on March 21, 2018 at 2PM Eastern Time, 1PM Central, 12PM Mountain, 11AM Pacific. It's free and open to the public, and advance registration is required. 

Register now at https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/2084653542898832897

Presenters: Dr. Dan Egel, Vegetable Pathology Extension Specialist, Dept. of Botany and Plant Pathology, Purdue University; Dr. Lori Hoagland, Associate Professor, Dept. of Horticulture, Purdue University; Dr. Amit-Kum Jaiswal, Postdoctoral Research Associate, Dept. of Horticulture, Purdue University

System Requirements

View detailed system requirements here. Please connect to the webinar 10 minutes in advance, as the webinar program will require you to download software. To test your connection in advance, go here. You can either listen via your computer speakers or call in by phone (toll call). Java needs to be installed and working on your computer to join the webinar.  If you are running Mac OSU with Safari, please test your Java at http://java.com/en/download/testjava.jsp prior to joining the webinar, and if it isn't working, try Firefox or Chrome.

This is an eOrganic article and was reviewed for compliance with National Organic Program regulations by members of the eOrganic community. Always check with your organic certification agency before adopting new practices or using new materials. For more information, refer to eOrganic's articles on organic certification.

eOrganic 24154

Conducting On-Farm Variety Trials to Manage Risk for Organic and Specialty Crop Producers

Join eOrganic for a 2-part webinar on how to conduct on-farm variety trials to reduce risk on organic and specialty crop farms. The goal of this two-part webinar series is to provide horticultural crop and small grain growers with the skills and information necessary to conduct effective on-farm trials, and manage risk in crop variety and seed sourcing decisions. These webinars include new perspectives from organic certifiers, updated methods for conducting simple and effective on-farm trials, and an introduction to new user-friendly online data analysis tools. This webinar series is open to all, but most appropriate for growers with at least two seasons of production experience. The webinars take place on March 20 and April 11, 2018, and they are free and open to the public. Advance registration is required.

Register just once to attend both webinars at https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/8859858486902985985

About the Webinars

Identifying optimum genetics through variety trials is an important risk management tool for organic producers. Well-suited varieties provide farmers with crops that perform optimally in particular climatic and management conditions, withstand pest and pathogen pressure, and meet market demands. These webinars are offered through a collaboration between Organic Seed Alliance, University of Wisconsin- Madison, Midwest Organic and Sustainable Education Service (MOSES), and the United States Department of Agriculture’s Risk Management Agency. 

Webinar 1: Trial planning, planting, and management. March 20, 2018

This webinar will introduce farmers to the practice of variety trialing, detailing the reasons one might choose to conduct trials and how to plan a trial with a scope, scale, and focus appropriate to the growers’ needs. This session will also cover seed sourcing, and important considerations for trial planting and management.

Webinar 2: Trial evaluation, analysis, and interpreting results. April 11, 2018

This webinar will focus on record-keeping and trial evaluation, as well as analysis and interpretation of final results. This session will introduce participants to some intuitive techniques for keeping data organized, and user-friendly online tools to aid in analyzing information collected and drawing conclusions from trial results.

About the Presenters

Micaela Colley is the Program Director of the Organic Seed Alliance. She leads OSA’s research and education programs focused on organic seed production and organic plant breeding.

Dr. Julie Dawson,Assistant Professor, University of Wisconsin- Madison. She is Assistant Professor for Urban and Regional Food Systems in the Department of Horticulture at UW-Madison. Her research focuses on variety trialling and breeding for organic systems in the upper Midwest.

Jared Zystro, Research and Education Assistance Director, Organic Seed Alliance. Jared manages regional organic seed system development in California, conducts participatory breeding projects and variety trials, and teaches farmers about seed production and plant breeding at workshops, conference, and field days, and collaborates on other projects throughout the country.

Kitt Healy, Midwest Research and Education Associate, Organic Seed Alliance. Kitt manages OSA’s research and education programming in the Midwest region, and is an outreach associate in Dr. Julie Dawson’s lab at UW-Madison.

This material is funded in partnership by USDA, Risk Management Agency, under award number RM17RMEPP522C027/4500075447.

System Requirements

View detailed system requirements here. Please connect to the webinar 10 minutes in advance, as the webinar program will require you to download software. To test your connection in advance, go here. You can either listen via your computer speakers or call in by phone (toll call). Java needs to be installed and working on your computer to join the webinar.  If you are running Mac OSU with Safari, please test your Java at http://java.com/en/download/testjava.jsp prior to joining the webinar, and if it isn't working, try Firefox or Chrome.

This is an eOrganic article and was reviewed for compliance with National Organic Program regulations by members of the eOrganic community. Always check with your organic certification agency before adopting new practices or using new materials. For more information, refer to eOrganic's articles on organic certification.

eOrganic 24153

Organic Tomato Seed Production Webinar

Join eOrganic for a webinar on organic tomato seed production on January 30, 2018 at 2PM Eastern Time (1 Central, 12 Mountain, 11 Pacific). The presenters are members of a NIFA OREI funded project entitled Tomato Organic Management and Improvement. The webinar is free and open to the public, and advance registration is required. 

Register now at: https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/3337021476188146690

About the Webinar

Tomato is one of the most popular fresh market vegetables, with a rich assortment of varieties that vary in appearance, flavor and agronomic properties. Learning how to produce your own seed will help ensure that your favorite varieties will continue to be available and passed on to future generations. This webinar will provide an overview of practices needed to successfully produce quality organic tomato seed. Key topics will include varietal considerations, isolation and management practices, and fermentation, storage and treatment practices that will maintain seed integrity and help reduce pathogen transmission.

Presenters

Julie Dawson, Assistant Professor, Dept. of Horticulture, University of Wisconsin-Madison; Dan Egel, Vegetable Pathology Extension Specialist, Dept. of Botany and Plant Pathology, Purdue University; Laurie McKenzie, Research and Education Associate, Organic Seed Alliance. Learn more about the Tomato Organic Management and Improvement project at https://eorganic.info/tomi

System Requirements

View detailed system requirements here. Please connect to the webinar 10 minutes in advance, as the webinar program will require you to download software. To test your connection in advance, go here. You can either listen via your computer speakers or call in by phone (toll call). Java needs to be installed and working on your computer to join the webinar.  If you are running Mac OSU with Safari, please test your Java at http://java.com/en/download/testjava.jsp prior to joining the webinar, and if it isn't working, try Firefox or Chrome.

 

This is an eOrganic article and was reviewed for compliance with National Organic Program regulations by members of the eOrganic community. Always check with your organic certification agency before adopting new practices or using new materials. For more information, refer to eOrganic's articles on organic certification.

eOrganic 24151

Gestion des insectes et maladies en cultures maraîchères de plein champ

Agenda BIO - jeu, 2017/12/07 - 15:55
2018-03-222018-03-29

DATE: 22 et 29 mars 2018

LIEU:

Cégep de Victoriaville, J-101

475 rue Notre-Dame Est

Victoriaville, Qc

G6P 4B3

ET

INTERNET

OBJECTIF

Développer une méthode de diagnostic des problèmes phytosanitaires.
Sensibiliser à l’importance de la surveillance phytosanitaire.
Connaître les insectes ravageurs et les agents pathogènes nuisibles aux cultures légumières.
Connaître les principales méthodes de lutte préventives et curatives en régie biologique.

CONTENU

Culture de l'ail biologique

Agenda BIO - jeu, 2017/12/07 - 15:22
2018-03-15

DATE DE LA FORMATION: 15 MARS 2016

LIEU:

Cegep de Victoriaville, J-101

475 rue Notre-Dame Est

Victoriaville, Qc

G6P 4B3

ET

Sur internet

 

Production de transplants bio en serre

CETAB+ Activités - jeu, 2017/12/07 - 14:28
2018-01-16

Date du cours: 16 janvier 2018

Lieu: 

Cégep de Victoriaville, E 102

475 rue Notre-Dame Est

Victoriaville, Qc

G6P 4B3

Disponible sur VIA

 

Abrasive Weeding: Efficacy, Multifunctionality, and Profitability

Join eOrganic for a new webinar on abrasive weeding by Sam Wortman of the University of Nebraska-Lincoln The webinar takes place on March 29, 2018 at 2PM Eastern, 1PM Central, 12PM Mountain and 11AM Pacific Time. The webinar is free and open to the public and advance registration is required.

Register now at  https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/3758336739503684611

About the Webinar

Small grits propelled by compressed air can be used to abrade weed seedlings within crop rows. This non-chemical weed management tactic is called abrasive weeding, and our research team has been developing new grit application technologies, exploring multifunctional grit sources, and studying effects of air-propelled grits on a diversity of weeds and crops throughout the Midwest. In this webinar, we will present results from over three years of research and development, and discuss opportunities for maximizing weed control, crop nutrition and yield, and profitability with abrasive weeding. eOrganic hosted an introductory webinar about this topic in 2015, available here, and this presentation will add new information.eOrganic also published an article and video about abrasive weeding, available here.

System Requirements

View detailed system requirements here. Please connect to the webinar 10 minutes in advance, as the webinar program will require you to download software. To test your connection in advance, go here. You can either listen via your computer speakers or call in by phone (toll call). Java needs to be installed and working on your computer to join the webinar.  If you are running Mac OSU with Safari, please test your Java at http://java.com/en/download/testjava.jsp prior to joining the webinar, and if it isn't working, try Firefox or Chrome.

This is an eOrganic article and was reviewed for compliance with National Organic Program regulations by members of the eOrganic community. Always check with your organic certification agency before adopting new practices or using new materials. For more information, refer to eOrganic's articles on organic certification.

eOrganic 24056

Webinaire: utilisation des outils de gestion en maraîchage développés par le CETAB+

CETAB+ Activités - lun, 2017/11/27 - 14:53
2017-12-27

Des outils de gestion ont été développés en 2017 adaptés à des besoins spécifiques des maraîchers diversifiés.

  • Registre de récoltes
  • Registre de temps de travail
  • Registre de ventes
  • Calculateur de coût de revient.

Ces outils sont disponibles en ligne.

Geoffroy Ménard, chargé de projet, donnera un atelier pratique pour montrer comment utiliser effiacement ces outils.

November 2017

New eOrganic Article: Spotted Wing Drosophila: Biology, Behavior and Organic Management 

This article, by Andrew Petran of the University of Minnesota examines the biology and management of spotted wing drosophila (SWD), Drosophila suzukii, within organic farming systems. Read the most up-to-date information on SWD management strategies from a multi-university study funded by NIFA OREI. Read the article here

New Video: Managing Cucurbit Downy Mildew on Organic Farms:

This new video will help you identify cucurbit downy mildew, learn which cultivars provide you with protection and which organic chemical controls might be appropriate for your production. It will also provide some tips on how to grow cucumbers under high tunnels and link to some blueprints for high tunnel design. The video was .created by Rachel Hultengren of Cornell University is from the NIFA OREI funded Eastern Sustainable Organic Cucurbit Project, led by Michael Mazourek. Watch the video here

2016 Cucurbit Trial Results Available

The Eastern Sustainable Organic Cucurbit Project has also published its trial results for 2016, from research farms in Alabama, North Carolina, South Carolina and New York. Researchers looked at the yield and resistance to various diseases of a variety of cucumbers, melons and summer squash. Find the 2016 report here, and find the report from 2014-15 here

New Organic Melon Webinar

Join eOrganic for a webinar on organic melon production: best practices, microbial safety and consumer preferences, by Shirley Micallef and Kathryne Everts of the University of Maryland. The webinar takes place on January 31 2017 at 2PM Eastern Time, 1PM Central, 12PM Mountain, 11AM Pacific Time. Find out more and register at http://articles.extension.org/pages/74584

Take our Online Organic Information Survey

If you didn't take this survey last month, please click the link below! We, the eOrganic staff and leadership team, are interested in learning more about your interests in certified organic agriculture to guide the development of eOrganic content. The survey will take about 3-5 minutes. Please give us your recommendations for future development of eOrganic online resources by answering the questions below. Please answer thoroughly, and honestly, to help us improve our information resources. There are no foreseeable risks associated with participation. Your participation is entirely voluntary; there will be no penalty if you choose not to participate or not to answer specific questions. Completion of the survey indicates that you have read and understood this description and agree to participate. Funding for this survey is provided by NIFA grants awarded to Oregon State University, Cornell University, University of Minnesota, University of Illinois, Purdue University, University of Georgia, Utah State University, Washington State University, Tuskegee University, the USDA-ARS, and the Organic Seed Alliance. Take the survey here!

Recordings available: Organic Soil Health Special Session

Recordings from the recent Special Session at the Tri-Societies Conference on organic soil health are now conveniently available as a YouTube playlist here. The following presentations are available:

Organic Seed Growers Conference

Registration is now open for the 9th Organic Seed Growers Conference, which is the largest organic seed event in the U.S. You’ll hear the latest in cutting-edge research and policy advocacy, and trade knowledge, techniques, and ideas with other seedheads from around the world. The conference provides a full agenda of presentations, panel discussions, and networking events. The first two days include farm tours and short courses prior to the full conference. The theme for 2018 is Synergy that Sustains, reflecting an emphasis on developing networks for research, education, and advocacy, and supporting a diversity of approaches to advancing organic seed systems. Find out more and register here

Our Farms, Our Future Conference

hosted by the Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education (SARE) program and the National Center for Appropriate Technology ATTRA program will be held on April 3-5, 2018 in St. Louis, Missouri. This national event will bring together a diverse agricultural community including farmers and ranchers, agribusiness stakeholders, students, researchers, scientists, agency representatives and nonprofit leaders. Every decade SARE hosts a conference to look at the progress of sustainability in agriculture and to understand its  trajectory for the future. Find out more and register here

eOrganic Mission

eOrganic is a web community where organic agriculture farmers, researchers, and educators network; exchange objective, research- and experience-based information; learn together; and communicate regionally, nationally, and internationally. If you have expertise in organic agriculture and would like to develop U.S. certified organic agriculture information, join us at http://eorganic.info.

eOrganic Resources

eOrganic logo

 

 

 

 

This is an eOrganic article and was reviewed for compliance with National Organic Program regulations by members of the eOrganic community. Always check with your organic certification agency before adopting new practices or using new materials. For more information, refer to eOrganic's articles on organic certification.

eOrganic 23936

Melon Medley: Organic Production Practices, Microbial Safety and Consumer Preferences of various Melon Varieties

Join eOrganic for a webinar on organic melon production: best practices, microbial safety and consumer preferences, by Shirley Micallef and Kathryne Everts of the University of Maryland. The webinar takes place on January 31 2017 at 2PM Eastern Time, 1PM Central, 12PM Mountain, 11AM Pacific Time.

Register now at: https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/3302866246541722626

About the Webinar

Melon (Cucumis melo subsp. melo) is a valuable commodity, but production in Maryland has significantly decreased over the last twenty years. Declines in production can be attributed to several factors including disease and pest susceptibility, labor demands, increased market competition, and frequent implication in multistate foodborne disease outbreaks and recalls. Moreover, although consumer demand for organically-cultivated fruit continues to rise steadily every year, organic melon systems in the hot, humid climate of Maryland present unique challenges in the form of pest management and crop protection. To better understand how organic production practices may not only improve yield and fruit quality, but also decrease food safety risk, several melon varieties were grown using tilled single and two-species green manures in organic and transitional systems. Melon yield, disease incidence, melon sensory qualities and transmission of foodborne indicator bacteria onto fruit were assessed. Different melon cultivars grown in various green manures were transported to the lab for evaluation of their susceptibility to human pathogen colonization. Data on best production practices, microbial safety and consumer preference of various melon cultivars can provide farmers with applicable information to improve profitability of this valuable crop. This webinar will present results and discuss successes and challenges experienced throughout this three year study, funded by USDA NIFA through the Organic Transitions Program.

About the Presenters

Dr. Shirley Micallef is an Associate Professor at the University of Maryland Department of Plant Science and Landscape Architecture. Her research focuses on the microbiological safety of fresh produce. 

Dr. Kathryne Everts is a Professor and Extension Specialist at the University of Maryland Lower Eastern Shore Research & Education Center  She conducts research on the epidemiology and management of vegetable diseases that are economically important in the mid-Atlantic region.Currently her lab focuses on the soilborne diseases Fusarium wilt on watermelon, and white mold on lima bean; Fusarium fruit rot on melon, and the foliar diseases cucurbit downy mildew and powdery mildew. 

System Requirements

View detailed system requirements here. Please connect to the webinar 10 minutes in advance, as the webinar program will require you to download software. To test your connection in advance, go here. You can either listen via your computer speakers or call in by phone (toll call). Java needs to be installed and working on your computer to join the webinar.  If you are running Mac OSU with Safari, please test your Java at http://java.com/en/download/testjava.jsp prior to joining the webinar, and if it isn't working, try Firefox or Chrome.

 

This is an eOrganic article and was reviewed for compliance with National Organic Program regulations by members of the eOrganic community. Always check with your organic certification agency before adopting new practices or using new materials. For more information, refer to eOrganic's articles on organic certification.

eOrganic 23948

Managing Cucurbit Downy Mildew on Organic Farms

eOrganic author:

Rachel Hultengren, Cornell University

Video Transcript

This video will focus on managing cucurbit downy mildew on organic farms. Downy mildew (caused by the oomycete Pseudoperonospora cubensis) has always been a disease of cucurbit crops. There are other downy mildews that affect other crops, but these generally cannot also infect cucurbits.

Dr. Michael Mazourek (Cornell University, Plant Breeding & Genetics Section): This is the characteristic symptom of downy mildew on cucumber. A lot of cucurbits get downy mildew, but the symptoms are very obvious on cucumber. It's this kind of quilted appearance on the top, and on the bottom is where you see the reason it has its name. There are these black spores underneath the yellow regions. If there's any uncertainty, you could put a leaf in a wet paper towel overnight, and see if it starts to sporulate, but if it's wet like in this high tunnel, there's no need to do that—you'll see the sporulation right away.

Downy mildew is particularly severe when the crop experiences alternating wet-dry cycles, as these are needed by the pathogen to reproduce and infect new hosts via airborne spores. If you have questions about whether your crop has downy mildew, you can consult a plant pathologist at your local land grant university.

Dr. Michael Mazourek: This leaf has a mixed infection—multiple pathogens are affecting it. We can see there's some downy mildew affecting it, and confirm that by seeing the quilted regions, the squares of the downy mildew spores on the back, that are black. It also has Alternaria. It would be hard to tell for sure that this is Alternaria, without actually looking at the spores under a microscope—like your local diagnostic lab might be able to help you with—but this is also, I know, a cultivar that's susceptible to Alternaria, and the cultivar we were just looking at before is not susceptible (it's resistant) to Alternaria, so that makes this quite a telling diagnosis.

As you are getting some diagnostics done, it's important to have a leaf just in the initial stages, because you'll have secondary infections moving in that are taking advantage of the diseased plant. So if you were to provide a sample like this to your diagnostic lab, there's just so much going on and taking advantage of the infected plant tissue that you can't really tell what was the cause—there are many other pathogens moving in and further colonizing this leaf that aren't necessarily the ones that caused it to die.

Zaid Kurdieh (Norwich Meadows Farm, Norwich, NY): At Norwich Meadows Farm, the cucumber crop is definitely the most difficult crop for us to take care of because of pests and diseases. It seems like downy mildew is getting worse and worse every year. We're getting it, it seems like, earlier and earlier; it did not used to be as bad years ago—say ten years ago.

Until 2004, downy mildew-resistant varieties of cucumber were commercially available and widely used. In 2004, the disease changed radically, and cultivars that were resistant to the old strain are now susceptible.

This video will provide information about finding cultivars that are resistant to this new strain, and the timing, chemical, and cultural strategies that you can use to reduce your losses due to cucurbit downy mildew.

There are currently very few choices for downy mildew-resistant cucumber cultivars. Some Asian-type cucumbers, like Suyo Long, tend to have usable resistance. In slicing cucumbers, there are cultivars with moderate to high levels of resistance coming out of the Cornell University program: Marketmore 97, Marketmore 420, and more recent releases DMR-264 and DMR-401.

Melon is the second most susceptible cucurbit to downy mildew. The Mazourek program at Cornell has identified resistant cultivars that are older, like Seminole, and developed a new cultivar, Trifecta, that's also commonly available. Hopefully, there will be many more choices in the future. While summer squash is the least susceptible to downy mildew, it can still suffer significantly.

It is important to remember that if you're growing both susceptible and resistant cultivars, or if you're growing a highly susceptible variety upwind of your resistant variety, the resistant cultivar can be overwhelmed. This high tunnel, for example, is downwind of an infected field of a susceptible variety of squash, so the cucumbers inside are being exposed to high levels of the airborne spores. Plan to grow susceptible cultivars downwind of resistant ones.

You need only use resistant cultivars when you know you are at risk for the pathogen. CDM IPM Pipe is a helpful website that provides forecasting information, and histories of when the disease has arrived in certain areas. Importantly, it can advise to the vulnerability of your crop (given your location), so you can learn how to time your interventions during times when the pathogen is likely to be in your area.

Knowing when you typically need to use a resistant cultivar can be a useful strategy for your farm. You should know that when you are working with resistant cultivars, there are often trade-offs for agronomic or quality characteristics. As you can see in this graph, there are many other great varieties to grow earlier in the season, when cucurbit downy mildew is not a problem. Use resistant cultivars when and where appropriate.

One OMRI-listed pesticide that has been shown to be an effective and therefore potentially useful tool for controlling cucurbit downy mildew is Zonix™, a rhamnolipid biosurfactant that kills zoospores.

For more information about Zonix™ and a variety of other chemical control methods, consult up-to-date resources as people explore the best ways to integrate biological and chemical controls.

NOTE: Before applying ANY product, be sure to 1) read the label to be sure that the product is labeled for the crop you intend to apply it to and the disease you intend to control in your state and local area, and 2) make sure that the brand name product is listed your Organic System Plan and approved by your certifier. For more information see Can I Use this Product for Disease Management on my Organic Farm?

Zaid Kurdieh:  Zonix™ definitely helps. This year, I think, because of the intense pressure, certain cultivars succumbed, they just couldn't handle it; the pressure was way too high.

Increasingly, growers are using high tunnels to have more control over their growing environment.

There are different designs of high tunnel, and differences in architecture affect the conditions inside. Gothic high tunnels, where trellises are hung from the rafters and humidity can be controlled through gable end vents, tend to be much drier. Under drier conditions, downy mildew cannot reproduce, so if your high tunnel design allows you to control humidity and leaf wetness, you'll be able to control downy mildew more effectively. Rounded high tunnels tend to be more humid than vented gothic high tunnels, but are still a more controlled environment than the field.

Even in a high tunnel, downy mildew can establish itself, leading to crop loss. In the drier high tunnels, we typically see the disease on the perimeter, where the plants are subject to outside conditions.

Because high tunnels change the environment, growing in a high tunnel requires varieties that are well suited to high tunnel production. If the high tunnel is being used to exclude striped cucumber beetles and other pests, it will be necessary to grow parthenocarpic cultivars that do not require pollination to set fruit, such as Beit-alpha cucumbers. Seed catalogues will include the term parthenocarpic in their descriptions—look to determine whether netting the high tunnel will be useful or detrimental based on the cultivar you're growing.

In a high tunnel, with increased transpiration, there can be an increased severity of wilt pathogens that might not be a problem outdoors in the Northeast, such as bacterial wilt.

Dr. Michael Mazourek: Here is a cucumber suffering from bacterial wilt. It is a bacterium transmitted by striped cucumber beetles—as they feed they'll infect the plant—and you have this appearance very much like the plant is shutting like an umbrella. Also accompanied with it, you can see in this leaf symptom here, is that there will be this browning between the major veins in the leaves that often accompanies it. There are many other wilts that can affect a cucumber plant, but bacterial wilt is by far the most common, especially in high tunnels, in my experience.

There is one bacterial wilt-resistant cucumber cultivar: please contact Dr. Michael Mazourek at Cornell University if you are interested in growing this variety.

There are a few considerations to keep in mind when growing under high tunnels. First, it is a good idea to rotate crops in your high tunnel to break up disease cycles.

Zaid Kurdieh: Those rotations are critical. Rotations are very, very critical.

Growing a wide range of crop families can make a significant difference in disease pressure, and be a valuable tool in soil fertility management. Nutrient management requires greater attention under high-tunnel cultivation, as the lack of soil exposure to rain can facilitate the buildup of soluble salts.

One way to address this is to have a rolling high tunnel, like this one at Cornell's Dilmun Hill student farm. The rails allow the tunnel to be moved from one field to another; this way, one plot is exposed to precipitation every 6 months, allowing salts to leach more effectively from the soil.

Alena Hutchinson (Cornell University, Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering '18): Here at Dilman Hill, we have a movable high tunnel. It's just like a traditional high tunnel, but it's on a set of rails, and the tunnel itself is mounted on pipe-gate rollers, which are actually used in chain-link fences. And that allows the tunnel to be moved by just one or two people from one site to another.

The plot that's uncovered by the high tunnel is exposed to the elements, and also, generally, we have a cover crop planted there. And what that does is while your cover crop is replenishing the good nutrients that you do want your plants to have for the next season, the rain and snow and other elements that that side is exposed to, (it) has kind of the buildup, that you don't want, washed away.

We designed the high tunnel here at Dilman Hill, and the blueprints are freely available on our website.

You can also look at the economic analysis tool that we've developed to help you consider the costs and benefits of these interventions. It will be hosted here on the resource page of the Eastern Sustainable Organic Cucurbit Project.

In the end, you'll have the best results when you combine all of these practices into a holistic strategy for managing cucurbit downy mildew. Understanding when your farm is at risk, which cultivars provide you protection and when to use them, which chemical controls might be appropriate for your production, and how to grow cucumbers under high tunnels, can all increase your ability to successfully manage the disease on your organic farm.

Many thanks to the USDA's National Institute of Food and Agriculture for supporting this work.

Additional Resources

High Tunnel Blueprints:

 

This is an eOrganic article and was reviewed for compliance with National Organic Program regulations by members of the eOrganic community. Always check with your organic certification agency before adopting new practices or using new materials. For more information, refer to eOrganic's articles on organic certification.

eOrganic 23927

Spotted Wing Drosophila: Biology, Behavior and Organic Management

eOrganic author:

Dr. Andrew J. Petran, University of Minnesota

Introduction

This article examines the biology and management of spotted wing drosophila (SWD), Drosophila suzukii, within organic farming systems. Information compiled in this article has been adapted from relevant publications and a recent two-year, multi-university study funded by the UDSA Organic Agriculture Research and Extension Initiative (OREI). More information on this project can be found on the Organic Management of Spotted Wing Drosophila Website or the recording of the recent webinar about SWD from February 2017. 

SWD Biology and Behavior 

Native to eastern Asia, SWD is an invasive fruit fly first discovered in 2008 on mainland United States. Mature adults are approximately 2.5mm in length, similar to a single raspberry drupelet. Male SWD have a distinguishable black spot on the first vein of their wings (Fig. 1a), and a black band on the first two tarsal segments of their forelegs. While harder to identify, females have a serrated ovipositor (Fig. 1b). This allows SWD to lay eggs within intact, still-ripening fruit.

 

Figure 1. Adult Spotted Wing Drosophila. (a) Male SWD; (b) Close-up of serrated ovipositor on female SWD. Photo Credits: (a) G. Arakelian, Oregon Department of Agriculture; (b) M. Hauser, California Department of Agriculture.

There are several fruit fly species with similar morphologic characteristics to SWD, most notably Drosophila subpulchrella, which also has dark wing spots. However, this fly is not present in the United States. While a specialist is typically needed for conclusive identification, a grower can reasonably identify SWD caught in traps using the reference traits described above. 

The common fruit fly, Drosophila melanogaster, is native to the United States and doesn't pose a significant economic threat to fruit growers. This is because it can only lay eggs in fruit that is either previously damaged or overripe, and thus already unmarketable. Due to the serrated ovipositor, SWD can pierce into the developing skin of intact fruit. This simple morphologic difference is why SWD poses such a threat to fruit producers nationwide (Fig. 2). 

Figure 2. A comparison of ovipositors between D. melanogaster and SWD. Photo credit: M. Hauser, California Department of Agriculture. 

Adult SWD prefer relatively cool and humid environments. They are most active at dawn and dusk, at temperatures ranging between 59 and 70 degrees Fahrenheit. As the end of the field season nears, SWD adults emerge as winter morphs, with different morphological characteristics. The bodies of winter morphs are distinctively darker in color, with larger wings. Research is ongoing to determine the ability of winter morphs to overwinter at cold temperatures and to travel long distances for migration. 

Life Cycle and Field Infestation 

Adult SWD prefers underripe, developing soft-skinned fruit for laying eggs. This includes raspberries, blackberries, blueberries, cherries, strawberries, and dozens of wild fruits found throughout the country. Asplen et al. (2015) provides a thorough description of the SWD life cycle: female SWD lay their eggs inside the fruit, which then develop into first, second, and third larval instar phases before pupation. Pupae can develop partially or completely outside of the fruit before emerging as adults (Fig. 3). Development rate is dependent on temperature, but a complete life cycle can occur in as little as 10 days, with up to 13 generations in a single field season. Adult female SWD are capable of laying over 300 eggs in a lifetime. 

Figure 3. SWD life cycle. Photo credit: UMass Extension. 

Initially, SWD infestation within fruit can be difficult to identify. Seemingly intact fruit will have an oviposition scar on the skin, with breathing tubes from the SWD egg extruding from the position of the scar (Fig. 4a). Eventually the area around the scar becomes soft and sunken as the larvae develop (Figs. 4b & 4e). Fruit will commonly fall off of the plant by the time pupation occurs, and can break apart when handled (Figs. 4c & 4f). SWD development within fruit occurs between 43 and 89 degrees Fahrenheit, with optimum development at 84° F (Asplen et al.). Adults emerge soon after pupation, and begin the next generational life cycle. Using 43° F as a lower threshold, the average developmental period for SWD eggs, larvae, pupae, and adults are 20, 122, 93 and 1,050 degree days, respectively (Kinjo et al.). 

Figure 4. SWD infestation development within cherry and blueberry. (a) Initial oviposition, (b) Larval development, (c) Pupation partially visible on fruit, (d) Intact fruit, (e) Partially sunken fruit indicating larval development, (f) Degraded fruit. Red arrows indicate location where SWD eggs were laid. Photo credit: M. Hauser, California Department of Agriculture and A. Sial, University of Georgia.

SWD presence in the field is dependent on environmental conditions. In geographic regions where temperatures rarely fall outside of developmental limits, SWD can be detected year-round. However, areas that experience midsummer highs above 90° F can expect SWD presence to fall during that time. Conversely, regions where winter temperatures are consistently below freezing will not typically support SWD, though occasional winter morphs (late-season SWD thought to be more cold tolerant) have been caught in Wisconsin and Minnesota as late as December. Whether these morphs are surviving in shelters or benefitting from an occasional milder winter has yet to be determined. Another open area of research is determining whether summertime SWD in northern regions are primarily overwintering, or migrating from more southern regions where winter temperatures are not fatal.

Lee et al. (2011) observed that most small-fruit crops become susceptible to SWD as they begin to turn color. If left unchecked, growers of mid-to-late season crops such as late season blueberry and primocane fruiting raspberry can expect up to 100% crop loss. Crop losses due to SWD have been estimated to cost up to $500 million annually in the western United States alone (Goodhue et al., 2011). 

Organic Management of SWD

Controlling SWD on farms is difficult due to their short generation time, wide host range, lack of natural predators, and even their hearty immune systems. Organic growers face an especially hard task, being constrained to control practices that are organically approved. This portion of the article will document current research and best practices for monitoring and controlling SWD in organic systems. 

SWD Traps

Proper SWD management first requires knowing when they are present on the farm. The most common method for detecting SWD presence is trapping. SWD traps are commercially available but can also be made by hand. Most traps consist of three parts: a perforated container, a lure to attract SWD inside the container, and soapy water that SWD will eventually drown in. Many commercial lures are organically approved and hang above the liquid inside the container, but homemade lures are also commonly made. Lure recipes involving yeast, apple cider vinegar and sugar dissolved in the trap water are available online. 

Figure 5. Commercial SWD trap hanging in St. Paul, MN. Photo credit: Andrew Petran.

Traps are typically checked once a week. Depending on the trap type, this will involve inspecting sticky cards for SWD or draining the liquid through a filter to separate the caught insects before inspection. The liquid is commonly replaced during this time as well.

SWD traps are important because they indicate when the pest is first present on the farm. However, once SWD presence has been determined, the usefulness of traps likely diminishes. There is little to no current data consistently linking SWD trap numbers to total presence in the field or fruit infestation levels (Asplen et al., 2015). This is confounded by the variable effectiveness of trap types and environments, making it difficult to establish trap threshold standards. Additionally, there is no evidence that SWD traps are an effective method for reducing overall SWD populations in the field. Thus, the labor and economic costs of maintaining SWD traps after their presence is first determined may be more than the potential benefit of leaving them for the extent of the season.

Note that SWD traps are not the same as attract-and-kill devices, a new possible management technique that will be discussed later in the document.

Phenology Management

Phenology management, or avoidance through early management, requires knowing when SWD first arrives in an area, and is thus informed by trapping. Essentially, this technique embraces the philosophy of ‘if you can't beat them, avoid them’. If a grower lives in an area where SWD is not present year-round, they may have the opportunity to grow crops with a fruiting window that does not correspond with peak SWD season. For example, a grower in southern Minnesota can plant early-season blueberries that mature in early July. Even though this fruit is susceptible to SWD infestation, they can harvest relatively risk free because SWD doesn't appear in high numbers in this environment until harvest is ending (Fig. 6). 

Figure 6. SWD presence and severity, along with common fruiting windows of several blueberry and raspberry cultivars in the Upper Midwest. Figure by Andrew Petran.

Note that phenology management will be more effective in areas where SWD populations vary over the year. Regions where SWD is present year-round will likely not benefit from this practice. SWD presence by region is outlined in Asplen et al. (2015), or can be determined by SWD trapping or contacting a local extension agent.

Organic Sprays

Only organically approved insecticides can be used for SWD control on organic land. Any product listed by the Organic Materials Review Institute (OMRI) can be used on organic land, as long as application guidelines are followed.

IMPORTANT: Before using any pest control product in your organic farming system:

  1. Read the label to be sure that the product is labeled for the crop and pest you intend to control.
  2. Read and understand the safety precautions and application restrictions.
  3. Make sure that the brand name product is listed in your Organic System Plan and approved by your USDA-approved certifier.

Organically-approved spray options for SWD control are limited, both in availability and effectiveness. A two-year, multi-university study funded by the OREI observed Entrust® SC as the most effective spray for SWD control, with Grandevo® also showing effectiveness controlling 3rd instar larvae within infested fruit (Fig. 7). Products known as adjuvants can be mixed with insecticides to increase their efficacy. These products may influence the effectiveness of sprays on SWD.

Figure 7. (a) Adult SWD mortality after being exposed to leaves containing insecticides immediately after spraying (blue bar), 3 days after spraying (orange bar) and 5 days after spraying (grey bar). (b) SWD Larval presence after fruit is exposed to insecticide treatments. Figures available on eOrganic webinar for organic management of spotted wing drosophila.

Current research is attempting to identify novel sprays and application strategies that are effective at controlling SWD in the field. This includes the use of biochemical pesticides that display reduced toxicity on pollinators, and non-nutritive sugars that may lead to increased SWD mortality.

Attract-and-Kill Devices

Attract-and-kill pest management tactics utilize attractants to bring a target pest into contact with a killing device, including traps. While SWD traps are useful for detecting initial SWD presence in the field, using them for management is difficult as multiple hundred traps per acre may be required. Attract-and-kill (AK) devices that work by luring SWD to an insecticide or other killing method may provide a lower maintenance approach for reducing SWD populations and thus infestation. They offer advantages over traditional spraying that include less pesticide use, pesticides being concentrated on the device instead of plant material or fruit, and combining the insecticide with attractants to promote oral intake.

One SWD AK device being evaluated is the attracticidal sphere. Laboratory and field trials have shown SWD have a strong preference for red-colored spheres (Rice et al., 2016). The devices consist of a hemispherical plastic base capped with a wax/sugar/insecticide mixture (Fig. 8). In laboratory trials, SWD that came into contact with spheres loaded with Entrust® for 5 minutes experienced 80% mortality, with 100% mortality after 24-hr exposure (Rice et al., 2017). The goal is to have commercially available attracticidal spheres in the future.

Figure 8. SWD AK devices (a) close up with SWD, and (b) deployed in the field. Photos by Kevin Rice, USDA-ARS.

More information on SWD AK can be found on the eOrganic webinar for organic management of SWD.

Pruning Management

Environmental research has observed that SWD are most active at dawn and dusk, preferring to stay in cool, moist, and shady areas during the day (Asplen et al., 2015). The interior plant canopy of most fruit crops can provide this environment, possibly making it easier for SWD by hiding within the very plants they infest. Research is underway to determine if intensive pruning techniques can alter the microenvironment to be less beneficial for SWD, thus reducing infestation. Research is being conducted in multiple states on blueberries, blackberries, and raspberries with three major pruning treatments: a grower standard prune, a light prune with ≈25% more canopy coverage, and a heavy prune with ≈25% less canopy coverage (Fig. 9). 

Figure 9. Pruning treatments on Minnesota blueberry plants. Photo by Andrew Petran.

In 2016, data indicated that while heavy pruning often results in reduced total yields, pruning treatments have little effect on cumulative SWD infestation. However, preliminary 2017 data on Minnesota blueberries suggest that a heavier prune can result in a higher proportion of fruit available at the beginning of harvest. This may have phenological effects, loading a higher proportion of fruit into a window when SWD is not present in the environment.

Another possible advantage of pruning is the effect it may have on other control methods, such as spraying. By reducing the total canopy area, heavier pruning could allow sprays to penetrate further into the interior of the plant, where SWD are known to typically gather during the heat of summer days.

Floor Management

As discussed earlier, fruit infested with SWD often falls to the ground before adult emergence. This can make sanitation difficult, but it also allows the opportunity to examine floor management as an SWD control technique. In 2016, the OREI SWD project researched the effects of different mulch types on within-fruit SWD development. Artificially-infested blueberries were placed in different mulch treatments (plastic landscape fabric, and organic mulching material such as wood chips or sawdust, depending on location) and analyzed for adult emergence in Oregon, Minnesota, Georgia, and Michigan. Berries were placed both on top and underneath the surface of each mulch type. It was observed that maximum temperature conditions underneath the surface of mulching materials were less than the maximum temperatures observed on top (Fig. 10). Correspondingly, these treatments also had higher levels of SWD emergence from fruit.

Figure 10. Average, maximum, and minimum temperature conditions of mulch treatments in Minnesota blueberry fields. Two 1-week trials were conducted.

If 2017 results are similar, these findings can help growers make more informed cultural practice decisions for SWD management. For example, infested fruit that falls onto black landscape fabric can be exposed to temperature conditions that inhibit adult SWD emergence. Also, a 2016 survey revealed that growers sometimes bury fallen fruit as a sanitation practice. However, these results imply that such a practice provides infested fruit with more ideal developmental conditions, and may actually increase SWD emergence and presence on the farm.

SWD Exclusion 

Exclusion management is the practice of creating a complete physical barrier around a crop. The barrier should restrict outside pests and pathogens from coming into direct contact with plant tissue, but also may alter environmental conditions around the crop. Growers may be hesitant to employ exclusion practices due to initial infrastructure costs and/or the notion of trapping pests within the barrier if they manage to migrate inside. However, OREI research has observed that this organic practice can be consistently effective at reducing SWD infestation in small fruits.

SWD exclusion can mean completely enclosing a crop in plastic or a fine mesh insect netting, but often involves both—constructing a plastic-covered high tunnel around a crop, and covering any entrances, exits and ventilation holes with insect netting that SWD cannot pass through (Fig. 11). This mesh can be found through several commercial sources. Nets with tighter weaves are often heavier and exclude more insects; 80-gram insect netting is recommended for excluding SWD.

Figure 11. Miniature plastic high tunnels capped with 80g insect netting on either side, Morris, MN. Photo credit: Andrew Petran.

Exclusion management has been shown to effectively reduce SWD presence and infestation of small fruits, even compared to conventional control options. In 2015, exclusion practices in Minnesota reduced SWD infestation of fall-bearing raspberries to ≈2%, compared to 80% infestation in uncovered plots, and 61% infestation in uncovered plots treated with conventional insecticides (Rogers et al., 2016). Netting has shown similar effectiveness in reducing SWD in blueberry (Cormier et al., 2015). 2016 OREI exclusion research conducted on raspberries, blueberries and blackberries in Michigan, Arkansas, and Minnesota all observed higher temperatures and lower humidity inside exclusion tunnels. These tunnels also had significantly lower SWD infestation and higher marketable yields compared to uncovered controls (Figs. 12a & 12b).

 

Figure 12. (a) SWD presence in exclusion and non-exclusion blueberries in Michigan, 2016. (b) Total yield and % marketable fruit of different blackberry exclusion treatments in Arkansas, 2016. Poly-covered tunnel refers to tunnels completely enclosed in plastic alone, whereas netted tunnel refers to complete enclosure in exclusion netting.

While OREI research has observed only increases in marketable yields in exclusion settings, there is a concern that exclusion techniques can reduce potential yields by restricting pollinator access to crops, in addition to SWD. A recently funded project by the Minnesota Department of Agriculture is researching the effect of introducing commercial bumblebees within exclusion tunnels for fall-bearing raspberry.

Conclusion

Like most invasive pests, SWD is a problematic insect in the United States. Its broad host range and lack of native predators make it a threat to fruit growers throughout the country. Organic control options are limited, but this article documents current research efforts and outlines various ways that growers can limit SWD presence and infestation on their land. This includes choosing crops whose fruiting phenology does not match up with SWD presence in their area, wise use of organically-approved sprays and attract-and-kill devices, employing plastic or fabric mulch to inhibit the development of infested fruit that has fallen on the canopy floor, and using exclusion tunnels to create a physical barrier between the crops and SWD in the field. Even more innovative research is being conducted on organic SWD control, so check the Organic Management of Spotted Wing Drosophila website for updates!

References and Citations
  • Asplen, M. K., G. Anfora, A. Biondi, D.-S. Choi, D. Chu, K. M. Daane, …N. Desneux. 2015. Invasion biology of spotted wing Drosophila (Drosophila suzukii): A global perspective and future priorities. Journal of Pest Science 88:469–494. Available online at: https://doi.org/10.1007/s10340-015-0681-z (verified 16 Nov 2017).
  • Cormier, D., J. Veilleux, A. Firlej. 2015. Exclusion net to control spotted wing Drosophila in blueberry fields. IOBC-WPRS Bulletin 109:181–184. Available online at: https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Annabelle_Firlej/publication/273458102_Exclusion_net_to_control_spotted_wing_Drosophila_in_blueberry_fields/links/5503304c0cf24cee39fd635f.pdf) (verified 15 Nov 2017).
  • Goodhue, R. E., M. Bolda, D. Farnsworth, J. C. Williams, and F. G. Zalom. 2011. Spotted wing drosophila infestation of California strawberries and raspberries: Economic analysis of potential revenue losses and control costs. Pest Management Science 67:1396–1402. Available online at: http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/ps.2259/abstract (verified 16 Nov 2017).
  • Hauser, M. 2011. A historic account of the invasion of Drosophila suzukii (Matsumura) (Diptera: Drosophilidae) in the continental United States, with remarks on their identification. Pest Management Science 67:1352–1357. Available online at: https://doi.org/10.1002/ps.2265) (verified 15 Nov 2017).
  • Kinjo, H., Y. Kunimi, and M. Nakai. 2014. Effects of temperature on the reproduction and development of Drosophila suzukii (Diptera: Drosophilidae). Applied Entomology and Zoology 49:297–304. Available online at: https://doi.org/10.1007/s13355-014-0249-z) (verified 15 Nov 2017).
  • Lee, J. C., D. J. Bruck, H. Curry, D. Edwards, D. R. Haviland, R. A. Van Steenwyk, and B. M. Yorgey. 2011. The susceptibility of small fruits and cherries to the spotted-wing drosophila, Drosophila suzukii. Pest Management Science 67:1358–1367. Available online at: https://doi.org/10.1002/ps.2225) (verified 15 Nov 2017).
  • Rice, K. B., B. D. Short, S. K. Jones, and T. C. Leskey. 2016. Behavioral responses of Drosophila suzukii (Diptera: Drosophilidae) to visual stimuli under laboratory, semifield, and field conditions. Environmental Entomology 45:1480–1488. Available online at: https://doi.org/10.1093/ee/nvw123) (verified 16 Nov 2017).
  • Rice, K. B., B. D. Short, and T. C. Leskey. 2017. Development of an attract-and-kill strategy for Drosophila suzukii (Diptera: Drosophilidae): Evaluation of attracticidal spheres under laboratory and field conditions. Journal of Economic Entomology 110:535–542. Available online at: https://doi.org/10.1093/jee/tow319) (verified 15 Nov 2017).
  • Rogers, M. A., E. C. Burkness, and W. D. Hutchison. 2016. Evaluation of high tunnels for management of Drosophila suzukii in fall-bearing red raspberries: Potential for reducing insecticide use. Journal of Pest Science 89:815–821. Available online at: http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10340-016-0731-1 (verified 16 Nov 2017).
  • Takamori, H., H. Watabe, Y. Fuyama, Y. Zhang, and T. Aotsuka. 2006. Drosophila subpulchrella, a new species of the Drosophila suzukii species subgroup from Japan and China (Diptera: Drosophilidae). Entomological Science 9:121–128. Available online at: https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1479-8298.2006.00159.x) (verified 15 Nov 2017).

This is an eOrganic article and was reviewed for compliance with National Organic Program regulations by members of the eOrganic community. Always check with your organic certification agency before adopting new practices or using new materials. For more information, refer to eOrganic's articles on organic certification.

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