University of Maryland Extension

2020 Virtual Twilight Tour Videos

 

With in-person meetings being cancelled due to COVID-19 restrictions, we have taken our annual twilight tour virtual! There's no tractor or hay wagon this year, but you can still learn what's been going on at the University of Maryland Research and Education Centers this past summer. Please enjoy these video presentations, and we look forward to having you back on the farm next year!

 

Can Spotted-Wing Drosophila Vector Fruit Rot Fungi?

The invasive vinegar fly, spotted-wing drosophila (SWD), encounters a diverse fungal community in fall-bearing raspberries and blackberries that includes the primary fruit rot pathogens Botrytis cinerea and Cladosporium cladosporioides. Previous surveys of raspberry fruit have found that SWD larvae co-occur with and feed on both Botrytis and Cladosporium at low rates, indicating that an association may exist between these pests. To better understand these interactions and their potential impacts on insect and pathogen management within caneberries, we conducted field and laboratory studies that assess SWD as a potential vector for fruit rot pathogens. 

 

Developing a perennial living mulch system to manage cantaloupe pests 

Cantaloupe growers have to deal with many insect pests and the plant diseases they carry before getting their fruit to market. Some research suggests that intercropping other cucurbits with a living mulch may promote pest control services from other arthropods, and these practices may be transferable to cantaloupe. While results are still inconclusive and study is ongoing, it is possible that enhancing field diversity through intercropping may reduce grower reliance on chemical pesticides for pest control purposes. 

 

An IPM approach to controlling harlequin bug in Brassica crops 

Integrated pest management (IPM) can be a powerful tool for farmers and gardeners when traditional pest control methods aren’t an option. This project focuses on the harlequin stinkbug, a common pest of Brassica crops, as well as the parasitoid wasp species T. podisi which is a natural enemy of harlequin bug and other stinkbug species. The objective of this project is to increase the abundance of T. podisi wasps within the Brassica crop (broccoli) by intercropping with edamame soybeans which is the wasp’s natural foraging habitat, and therefore increasing likelihood of parasitism within the broccoli. 

 

Optimizing Trellis Systems to Control Spotted Wing Drosophila 

The invasive fruit fly spotted wing drosophila (SWD) [Drosophila suzukii (Matsumura)] disrupted Integrated pest management (IPM) in the U.S. small fruit production. In order to exploit SWDs' optimal climate conditions, an experimental trellis was examined in blackberries. The aim was to open the canopy to increase light penetration and temperature and reduce relative humidity. A less favorable environment might reduce pesticide applications and can be a helpful IPM tool. 

 

Marigolds, more than dependable bloomers 

Our goals include determining 1) whether marigold can influence the fauna of insect herbivores and beneficial arthropods associated with edamame and 2) whether it can be deployed as an insectary plant to enhance stink bug egg mortality due to predation and parasitism. 

 

Can sequential applications of soil-applied herbicides provide weed control in pumpkin?  

With the onset of herbicide-resistant weeds in the area, new tactics are needed for weed control in pumpkin. Overlapping residual herbicides is a technique that involves applying soil-applied residual herbicides sequentially in order to overlap the activity of one herbicide before the activity of the first herbicide dissipates. This video will discuss weed control efficacy and crop safety when using sequential applications of Dual Magnum. 

 

New Living Mulch and Cover Crop Combinations for Weed Suppression and Natural Enemy Enhancement 

This video highlights research being conducted in the Hooks Lab in the University of Maryland's Department of Entomology using novel living mulch and cover crop combinations to suppress weeds and increase beneficial insect abundance in sweet corn production.

 

 

 

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