OMAFRA CEA Webinar Series: Smart Sensors for Floriculture

Ever thought your plants were looking a little chlorotic, but didn’t want to waste time or money on tests? What if an smartphone app could tell you their nitrogen level? What if low cost sensors could help you monitor plant growth and tell you when PGRs are needed?

Having previously covered topics such as artificial intelligence and smart spraying, OMAFRA is continuing it’s CEA Webinar series, looking specifically at smart sensors. And they don’t have to be anything fancy to help you monitor your crop.

Although “floriculture” is in the title, the sensors and apps Dr. Krishna Nemali from Purdue University will discuss have applications across all avenues of controlled environment agriculture. Keep reading for details on the webinar, and how to register.

Knowing when to apply PGRs to crops like poinsettia is critical. A smart phone app could help make things easier with less staff training.
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Water Treatment: What System Should I Choose?

Water media filter in a greenhouse
Media filters can be an important step in water treatment: see this article in Greenhouse Grower.

This is the 6th article in a series about water sanitation. The goal of this series is to get you reflecting on your own irrigation system before a problem occurs. 

If you’re following our series on water sanitation, you saw that previous posts covered where problems are likely to occur in your greenhouse, the types of pathogens found in waterwhere and how to sample your water and getting and interpreting a DNA test for pathogens in your water.

This post covers water treatment options, and was written by C. Dayboll with input from Phytoserv and Soil Resource Group.

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Water DNA Tests: Pros, Cons and Interpreting Results

This post was written by S. Jandricic and A. Wylie.

Overhead boom irrigation

This is the fourth article in a series about water sanitation. The goal of this series is to get you reflecting on your own irrigation system before you are faced with a problem.  The first post covered where problems are likely to occur in your greenhouse ; the 2nd covered the types of pathogens found in water and the 3rd covered where and how to sample your water.

Once you’ve got your water sample, this post will cover why water DNA tests are useful, and how to interpret the results. This is the next step towards identifying and then treating your water issues to prevent unnecessary fungal or bacterial disease in your greenhouse crops, and potentially save you thousands of dollars in crop losses or fungicide applications.

These posts make good refresher resources, so make sure to bookmark them!

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Upcoming Floriculture Pest Management Webinars

Here at OMAFRA, we’re always happy to promote work done by our colleagues in floriculture extension, including Michigan State University Extension!

The Fall edition of their popular Bug Bites! Webinar Series features talks on onion thrips and thrips identification (by yours truly), as well as talks on nematode application, biopesticide interactions with beneficals, and supplemental nutrition for bios! It’s jam packed! Keep reading for all the details.

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The Whitefly “Tipping Point”and Testing Pesticides in Poinsettia

It’s that time of year again where you have to make a choice with your poinsettia. Do you stay the course with natural enemies, or abandon your bio program and spray  for whitefly? And spray with WHAT?

This post has tips on how to test pesticides NOW, so that when it comes down to the wire, you’ll know what is – and isn’t – working.

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Comparing Biocontrol to Pesticides for Bemisia Whitefly Control in Poinsettia

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T’is poinsettia sticking season once again, and the question always comes down to the same thing: do I use chemicals to control Bemisia whitefly and hope it works this year? Or do I switch to biological control?  Here we show some head to head comparisons that can help you decide.

An in-depth discussion of this topic was also captured by MSU’s “Bug Bites” last year, and I’ve included the video below.

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Poinsettia Production Tips: 2021

Poinsettias on Cruise Control | Greenhouse Industry Roundtable of ...

Poinsettia cuttings being rooted. Photo courtesy of Ohio State University.

Now that poinsettias are safely tucked into their prop trays and the threat of Erwinia (Pectobacterium) is almost over, it’s time to think about other poinsettia issues.

Root rots, nutritional issues, environmental stress and PGR mistakes can all be costly in this high-value crop.

Read on for common pitfalls and how to avoid them, and for some great video resources on poinsettia production.

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Poinsettia Problems: Your Monthly Scouting Guide, 2021

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This post on poinsettia problems was contributed to by Drs. Chevonne Dayboll and Sarah Jandricic.

When poinsettias get problems,  they always seem to hit hard and fast. Things like whitefly, Lewis mite, root rots, and nutritional issues can all quickly derail a quality crop. This is why scouting might be more important in this crop than any other.

Here’s a month by month guide on what you should be looking for to prevent small problems from becoming big issues.

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NEW: Free Online IPM Training for Greenhouse Staff

Need a refresher on specific pests of floriculture, and what to do about them? Want to see how Canada – a world leader in biological control in ornamental crops – does things?

Then the following IPM training videos, made by specialists and consultants in Ontario, are for you!

Keep reading to learn how to access these videos, and the topics they cover.

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They’re HEEERRE! Japanese Beetles Are In Flight.

Japanese Beetles Have Started To Emerge

Posted on June 25, 2021 by Jen Llewellyn

<a href="/clm/species/popillia_japonica"><em>Popillia japonica</em></a> (Japanese Beetle) adult on cedar.

Japanese Beetle (Popillia japonica) adults are starting to take flight in southern Ontario!  They have been spotted in Hamilton and Toronto this week.

Look for these shiny green and copper beetles feeding on grape leaves, roses and many other trees and shrubs. Where possible, homeowners can knock adults into a bucket of soapy water (to smother them).  Several insecticides are registered for the adults in greenhouses and nurseries, including BeetleGONE.

European chafer (Amphimallon majale) adults are also starting to emerge. Look for medium brown scarab beetle swarming blooming Linden trees (e.g. Tilia cordata).  Historically we see them around Canada day in the Guelph area.

RoseChaferAdultJLA 

And don’t forget about our little friends, the Rose Chafers (Macrodactylus subspinosus), pictured aboveThey are also out in full force. These scarab beetles feed on the flowers, fruit and foliage of several ornamentals.  The larval stage feeds on roots of grasses and weeds (usually a sod nursery pest). Like most scarab beetles, females are more likely to lay their eggs in sandy soils and will avoid egg laying in clay soils.  Insecticides for the grub stage of other scarab beetles will also reduce larvae of rose chafer.

Preventative applications of Intercept and Acelepryn are registered for white grubs in nursery and greenhouse production and the application period begins now. (Above photo: European chafer larval feeding damage).

Have questions regarding pesticide applications for this pest? Then check out this post from a few weeks ago on JB control and export regulations.