IPM for Homes
IPM for Lawn, Landscape, Garden
- Grow pest-resistant plants, shrubs, and trees. For example, plant disease-resistant vegetable seed or try Kousa dogwood instead of flowering dogwood. Choices should be well suited to soil and climate.
- Avoid injury to tree trunks (from mowers, weed whackers) that enable pests to gain footholds; lay mulch at tree bases.
- Destroy diseased plant materials, and clean up plant debris at the season's end.
- To combat weeds, maintain an adequately fertilized lawn; hand dig weeds; spot-treat.
- Use selective pesticides. Insecticidal soaps are effective against aphids, mealybugs, whiteflies, scale, and some other pests. Bacillus thuringiensis or "Bt" is a bacterium that kills leaf-eating caterpillars and other specific insects; it is sold in garden stores.
- Grow healthy plants. Pay attention to organic matter, watering, and other conditions for healthy plants. Don't grow closely related plants (e.g., tomatoes, peppers, eggplant) in the same location each year. Rotation prevents insect infestations, decreases the spread of diseases, and lessens the depletion of soil nutrients.
- Encourage beneficial insects--which kill pests--by growing large, showy composite flowers for them to land on and feed (such as Queen Anne’s lace, daisies, fennel, dill) and by limiting pesticide applications.
Pest-Specific IPM Tips
Cabbage looper and cabbageworm--Hand pick; encourage paper wasps and birds, which kill them; apply Bt.
Aphids--Wash off with a strong jet of water.
Grubs--Tolerate up to 10 per square foot (peel back one square foot of lawn to check). Try parasitic nematodes or milky spore disease, a bacterium that may reduce Japanese beetle grub populations when used with other management tactics. (It is most effective in specific areas of the state.)
Japanese Beetles--(adult form of grub). Knock from plants into a bucket of soapy water. Japanese beetle traps may actually increase the number of beetles in your yard; entire regions might be protected with perimeter traps set every 200 feet.
Moles--Understand that they eat grubs, which become Japanese beetles and other pests. Remove with mechanical mole traps or reduce your grub populations.
Ticks--Keep grassy areas mowed. Wear light-colored clothing that is tucked into socks at ankles; check yourself regularly, when outside and then at home. For ticks to transmit diseases, they must attach and feed for many hours.
Weeds--Put lawn weeds at a disadvantage by cutting grass blades no shorter than 3". In the garden, lay cardboard or mulch on pathways, and mulch between plants.