Don’t mess with mites — they can do serious damage to a vineyard before you even notice them. All it takes is a short period of hot and dry weather for a mite population to explode, reducing yields up to 20 percent or more. Check these four boxes to help manage one of the most damaging pests in your vineyard this summer season.
Scout, scout, scout!
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. Pests like the Pacific and two-spotted spider mites, 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 Integrated Pest Management 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.
Don’t forget about 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.
Consider the coverage
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. Often, 2 mph is ideal to 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:
- Effectiveness 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 provides 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.
And since resistance management is a critical part of any IPM program, KANEMITE® Miticide offers a unique chemical subgroup (20B) for fast knockdown of all stages of spider mites, while also being easy on beneficial insects and predator mites. A short pre-harvest interval of seven days makes KANEMITE® perfect for quick end-of-season mite control as well.
OMITE® Miticide, a highly effective rescue treatment with a unique fuming action, features three routes of entry into the spider mites — contact, residual and inhalation. Its rainfastness and lasting control make it effective throughout the season.
At UPL, you can count on a complete line of grape protection and a staff dedicated to helping you manage mites — or whatever pest issue you have — and keeping your vineyard going strong. Contact your retailer or UPL sales representative for additional information, or visit www.arysta-na.com.
OMITE is a restricted-use pesticide. Always read and follow label directions. All products and the UPL logo are trademarks of UPL Corporation Limited or its related companies. KANEMITE is a registered trademark of Agro-Kanesho Company, S.A. © 2019 UPL NA Inc. SPC-1908G