Of all the pests that can attack your grape crop, mites are among the most destructive. Be prepared this season with these four strategies from UPL.
Benefit from beneficials
Think about steps to maintain beneficial populations and achieve good spray coverage with miticide applications when pest populations reach the treatment threshold level. A good predictor for mite infestations is looking at what insecticides you’re using early in the season to control other insects. For example, if you’re treating for grape vine mealybug, look at how those treatments are affecting the predator mites, sixspotted thrips and other predators of spider mites.
Pay special attention to applying selective miticides to maintain populations of beneficial insects and predator mites, which will help control spider mites later in the season. For miticide applications, maintaining good IPM practices and the populations of beneficials is important.
Scout early and scout often
Nothing can replace being proactive by diligently scouting the crop, determining your treatment threshold level and getting in early with your miticide treatment before a spider mite population explodes. Pest mites like the two-spotted spider and European red mite typically like hot, dry weather, so most of the damage will occur in the summer. Scouting at least once a week during these optimal periods will help determine when infestations reach threshold levels.
The University of California IPM Program recommends scouting for spider mites after the first leaves emerge. Using a 10x or a 14x hand lens, note the presence of mites and mite predators. Threshold levels for mites and other insects, and recommendations for treatment, can be found on their website here.
Coverage is golden
Getting the application timing right — earlier in the infestation rather than later — is critical. Since mites populate underneath the leaves, they’re often shielded from the sprays. Applying miticides before the canopy gets too dense is one way to get around this.
Lowering the speed of the sprayer will help ensure better coverage — 2 mph is often ideal. This will help reduce inadequate coverage resulting from the “leaf flagging” issue often experienced in spraying grapes, where the leaves are blown parallel to the miticide spray stream, like a flag in the wind, which can reduce the amount of product adhering to the bottom surfaces of the leaves.
Get more from your miticide
Use the right miticide at the right time. Make sure to check these boxes when making your selection:
- Effective on multiple species
- Controls mites in all life stages, from eggs to adult
- Easy on beneficial insects
- Excellent crop safety
- Short re-entry and pre-harvest intervals
- Unique class of chemistry
- Easy to use
UPL offers miticides with the flexibility that growers need: quick knockdown, long-lasting control, and selectivity on beneficial insects and predator mites, all for excellent IPM compatibility.
ACRAMITE® Miticide (IRAC 20D) and VIGILANT® Miticide (IRAC 20D) provide outstanding protection from spider mites at all stages. Both miticides have a short 14-day pre-harvest interval for grapes and a reputation for going easy on predator mites and beneficial insects. For most programs, ACRAMITE and VIGILANT can be used throughout the season whenever spider mites are present and populations begin to build, offering a solution that seamlessly fits within the framework of your integrated pest management regimen.
KANEMITE® Miticide (IRAC 20B) offers exceptional control, rapid knockdown and long-lasting residual activity on two-spotted spider, European red and Pacific mites while going easy on predator mites and beneficials. Additionally, its unique active ingredient, acequinocyl, makes KANEMITE an ideal member of your resistance management program.
OMITE® Miticide (IRAC 12C) offers swift relief from mites using a unique active ingredient and fuming action. It provides fast and powerful knockdown of a wide range of mites at all life stages while allowing for great coverage everywhere these pests like to hide. OMITE is also rainfast for lasting control and is an excellent rescue treatment throughout the year and especially toward the end of the season.
You can count on UPL for a complete line of reliable grape protection and a staff dedicated to keeping your vineyard going strong. For more information, contact your local retailer or visit www.upl-ltd.com/us.