Arne van Aalst is soon to take up his position at Koppert Biological Systems. Van Aalst, who is now general director at the growers' association...
Tackle spider mite in cucumber crops effectively with Spical-Plus
01 August 2011
Spical-Plus contains the predatory mite Amblyseius californicus. The predatory mites are supplied in slow-release bags allowing predatory mites to crawl out of the bags gradually over a period of approx. 6 weeks. This makes Spical-Plus ideally suited to a preventive approach. Spider mite population explosions resulting from extreme climate conditions can thus be prevented.
Introducing Spical-Plus slow-release bags (4000 per hectare) assures the grower of a large number of predatory mites (1000 per bag) which will crawl out of the bags over a prolonged period and thus provide several successive weeks of protection against spider mite and the development of spider mite populations. This approach proves its value particularly from the second and third cucumber crop onwards.
The application strategy is dependent on the susceptibility of the spider mite in the crop concerned. In companies susceptible to spider-mite infestations, a total-crop approach is required. In less susceptible companies, a localised approach will also be sufficient (e.g. along outer walls, concrete paths and frames). The bags should be hung up in a humid spot, as low as possible in the crop, so that the bag touches the pot.
Once spider mite has been detected, Spidex (Phytoseiulus persimilis) must also be applied alongside the preventive approach. However, the use of Spical-Plus ensures that peaks in spider-mite population development are avoided. This creates a calmer atmosphere within the companies.
Besides cucumbers, Spical-Plus is also widely used in other crops such as roses. Every crop requires its own specific action plan.