You may see leafhoppers in your garden or landscape this time of year as they hop about feeding on a variety of plants. You can distinguish these small, wedge-shaped insects from other pests by their tendency to quickly jump or crawl rapidly sideways when disturbed.
Leafhoppers are sucking insects that insert their mouthparts into plants and suck out plant juices and cell contents. Damage occurs during feeding, which typically results in leaves looking stippled (little white dots), bleached, pale, or brown, and plant shoots may curl and die. You may notice a sticky residue on the plants called honeydew, a waste product from when some species of leafhoppers feed. A fungus called sooty mold may grow on the honeydew, which can be...
- Author: Niamh Quinn
It is important for food-safety reasons to manage rats in school and community gardens. Rats and other wildlife can carry a number of diseases that can be deposited in the form of urine and feces on fruit, vegetables, and in the soil. Rats can also directly damage fruit and vegetables by consuming the produce entirely or by gnawing on parts of it and making it unfit for human consumption. Norway rats create burrows that can compromise beds and root systems. While rats can also chew on drip irrigation and damage the tubes, it is more common for some other wildlife species to chew on these.
Managing rodents in and around school and community gardens can be difficult. One of the easiest ways to keep many rodents at bay is to remove...
- Author: John A Roncoroni
[From the Spring issue of the UC IPM Retail Nursery & Garden Center News]
“I hate crabgrass!” is a common lament I've heard from residents during my 35 years as a UCCE Weed Science Farm Advisor. However, four out of five times, the weed people are actually referring to is not crabgrass, but bermudagrass or dallisgrass. So why does knowing the name of the weed matter? It doesn't—unless you are trying to control it!
There are two annual weed species of crabgrass: large crabgrass and smooth crabgrass. Large crabgrass, sometimes.../span>
In mid-March, many people use clover-themed decorations in preparation for St. Patrick's Day. Many gardens and landscaped areas are “decorated” with clovers too, especially with recent rains and mild temperatures in much of California. For some people, clovers are considered weeds, but others enjoy the green color they bring!
Clovers begin to germinate in the fall and continue throughout winter and early spring. Their bright green leaves can blemish the look of lawns and may be unsightly when found in ornamental plantings.
Clovers growing in lawns or landscapes are often a sign of low soil nitrogen, so changing fertilization can help prevent their growth. Read the UC IPM publication
Pests have popularity contests too. We recently looked at how many visits our popular Pest Notes publication series received in 2017.
If you aren't familiar, the UC IPM Pest Notes series are science-based publications written and reviewed by experts on specific pest or management topics for California. UC IPM has 169 Pest Notes with some being more popular than others.
Here are the 20 most visited titles in 2017:
1- Carpet Beetles
For the third year in a row, carpet beetles was the most viewed of the UC IPM Pest Notes series on our website! This commonly occurring indoor pest can be accidentally brought into your home on cut flowers or through open doors...