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 Controlling Pests with IPM

Integrated Pest Management (IPM) saves money as well as protecting the environment at both Carver Orchard and Shelburne Farm in Stow.  IPM is an ecologically-based approach to pest control, combining several different techniques to maintain pests below damaging levels with little or no spraying.

The ladybug is the IPM apple farmer's friend.  Ladybugs and their larvae are voracious predators and their favorite meal is aphids. Each ladybug can devour over 5,000 aphids during its lifetime. IPM uses natural predators like the ladybug. 

Codling moth laying eggs, and the result The Codling Moth, shown here, is controlled without spray with IPM.  Male moths are attracted to  a perfume the female moths give off.  To fool the male, IPM farms hang dispensers of the perfume all over the orchard.  With the odor everywhere, the males are unable to find the females, no mating takes place, and the females don't lay eggs in the apples. 

Apple Maggot Flies are attracted to traps with color and odor, and then trapped on sticky paper. Tarnished Plant Bugs are controlled by delaying mowing the fields.  This keeps other foods available that the bugs prefer to apple blossoms.   These IPM methods are described by West Meadows Farm in Vermont.