Do you have a strategy to help mitigate pests coming into your facility, like dipping cuttings upon receipt?
The CFIA has recently released the Floriculture Sector Biosecurity Guide. Despite it’s imposing name, this is an excellent “road map” to help protect your facility from unwanted pests. The Guide offers biosecurity strategies from the time plants come in the front door ’till they’re out in the compost bin.
Don’t have a facility-wide Pest Management Program in place? This guide can provide the framework. (Why start from scratch?). Already have a strategy to mitigate risks from pests at your farm? Compare YOUR plan with the Floriculture Guide to see if you’ve overlooked anything.
On Saturday afternoon (Feb. 18th) from 2- 6pm at the Vineland OMAFRA office there will be a “Biosecurity Workshop”run by the Ontario Soil and Crop Improvement Association.
This workshop is targeted to greenhouse and hort producers. It will provide the necessary background for growers to submit applications to the Growing Forward 2 Program for biosecurity and pest control projects. Attendance at a biosecurity workshop is a necessary to apply for GF2 funding under this stream.
Last year several consultants and I noticed something strange. A number of greenhouses in Ontario had noticeable infestations of mealybug in their poinsettia crop. Thiswas the first time many in their 25+ year careers had seen this (e.g. see Mel Sawaya’s article in Greenhouse Canada Magazine).
It’s unclear yet if phenomenon will repeat itself this year (or perhaps affect even more operations), but growers should be on the lookout for this pest. Keep reading for more information about the potential cause of these mealybug infestations, and possible solutions.