Western Front Newsletter

Western Integrated Pest Management Center

Summer 2013


A Western IPM Center signature project

New Training Material Protects Water

When the U.S. Geological Survey conducted a 10- year study of pesticides in surface and groundwater, it collected water samples from 186 stream sites, sediment samples from 1,052 sites and fish samples from 700 sites.

Pesticides or pesticide residues were present at every single site.

Fortunately, most of the concentrations were low and not dangerous to human health. However, the findings do make the problem crystal clear – pesticides are finding their way into rivers, streams and groundwater sources across the United States, and they don’t belong there.

To address the issue, the Western Integrated Pest Management Center chose protecting water sources from pesticide contamination as one of its first-ever signature projects back in 2011. Recently completed, the project created three practical, hands-on training modules focused on pesticides and water quality – one aimed at agricultural applicators, one at professional urban landscapers, and one at homeowners.

The train-the-trainer modules are in the form of PowerPoint slide presentations and can be downloaded for free on the Western IPM Center website at www.wripmc.org. And, like so many great ideas, this one began over Italian food and good wine.

The Idea

It was August, 2011 in Portland, Oregon, the site of the National Pesticide Applicators Certification and Training Workshop. The University of Nevada’s Susan Donaldson, a water quality specialist and her state’s pesticide safety education coordinator, and the University of Idaho’s Ronda Hirnyck, the statewide extension pesticide coordinator for Idaho, were at the conference to make a joint presentation. Carrie Foss, Washington State University’s urban IPM director, invited them.

“I was on the planning committee for the conference and suggested that waterquality resources would be a good topic; focusing on what’s out there,” Foss said.

“I contacted Ronda and she and Sue compiled a lot of resources, a lot of good information.”

The presentation was very well received by the pesticide applicators, but attendees wanted more and all three women recognized there was a need for additional training materials focused specifically on water quality.

“People don’t think of water-quality protection best management practices as IPM, but they are,” Donaldson said. “We need to marry the two ideas.” At dinner that night, Foss, Hirnyck and Donaldson joined Linda Herbst, then the Western IPM Center’s associate director, and Joyce Strand, the associate director of communications for the University of California’s Statewide IPM Program, at one of downtown Portland’s many great Italian restaurants.

“Linda had the idea to create new training material as a Center signature project,” Foss said. “We thought it was great and started talking through what it would look like and how we envisioned the project.”

The Western IPM Center put up the funding, and the project launched a short time later. Darren Haver, a water resources and water quality advisor with the University of California Cooperative Extension Service in Orange County, and Jane Thomas, a Western IPM Center comment coordinator at Washington State University, were recruited to the team.

“We decided pretty quickly on what we wanted to do, who would do, and how we would do it,” Foss said.

And then they got it done.

The Modules

The training modules each have a different focus and different intended audience, but all deliver similar information.

“Each looks at how pesticides get into water, at soil and pesticide properties that can contribute to pesticides getting into water, and at how to use IPM practices to reduce pesticide contamination,” Foss said. “We wanted it to be positive and practical.”

Haver was happy to be involved.

“This was something I’d wanted to create for my own county for some time, but it was a very easy translation to do it for the whole region,” he said. “Most stuff doesn’t need to be so specific.”

In fact, a certain lack of specificity was by design.

“We expect people to take these modules and adapt them for their local audiences and needs,” Foss said. “We want trainers to add in information they feel is pertinent.” For instance, the three presentations do not contain specific precautions about pyrethroids or organophosphates, and a few reviewers thought they should. The team initially had that information included, but decided to cut it out.

“That type of specific pesticide information is important and it’s something we expect a trainer to include as it relates to their area and audience,” Foss said. Unlike many training materials, these were peer reviewed before publication.

“We don’t consider this the end of the project,” Foss said. “I hope we continue to get comments and reviews, because we’ll make changes to improve the information.”

The Impact

Foss, Donaldson, Hirnyck and Haver have all used the training material for local audiences with good results. Haver presented the urban modules to a group of local government representatives, and the others have used various modules with groups as large as 220 people.

Hirnyck did audience surveys at several of her presentations to agricultural applicators, and got encouraging feedback.

“After this workshop, I have learned more about how pesticides get into our drinking water and streams.” 84% agreed.

“In the future, I plan to review my pesticide applications to be sure I am incorporating BMPs to protect water resources in my area.” 86% agreed.

“Did your knowledge of pesticide use and safety increase as a result of attending this class?” 92% said yes.

The key now is getting the training material out to a larger audience so awareness reaches from large commercial applicators all the way to the home gardener who occasionally buys a gallon of herbicide at the local nursery.

“We need all audiences thinking about what they can do to keep pesticides out of the water,” Donaldson said. “Every little bit helps, and we want people to start doing what they can do.”

One thing the Western IPM Center has done is make the slide presentations available to anyone who wants to use them. Visit www.wripmc.org and look for the “Water Quality Protection Training Modules for Agriculture, Homeowners & Landscape Professionals” link under Useful Resources. That will take you to a registration page (so the Center can track downloads) and once you’ve entered your contact information it’ll take you to the slides. From there, you can download each module to your computer, then add, modify and customize the presentations to make them useful to your local audience.

And share them with any colleagues who also might be able to use them.

“My perspective is we can’t continue to contaminate our water supply,” Donaldson said. “I’m a mother of children who will also have children. These things are important. We have to learn how to manage the risk.”

Understanding and Accessing Western IPM Center Funding

At its core, the Western IPM Center  is a funding agency, dedicated to  advancing the science of integrated  pest management and promoting the  adoption of IPM practices in the field.   

To help researchers make the most  of our funding – which like most  funding is both competitive and  limited – here’s a quick guide to Center  funding programs, and how they can  be used throughout the life of a project.   

Surveys and Crop Profiles 

Survey and crop profile grants are  small awards that enable researchers to  document and understand current pest  management practices, either in a specific  crop or region. Unlike most Center grants,  both are open to single researchers,  and projects can be limited to a single  state. These grants are usually less than  $10,000 and can be as small as $1,000.   

Pest Management Strategic Plans 

Pest Management Strategic Plan grants  take the next step to go beyond current  practices to identify what’s important  for the future of a particular commodity.  PMSP grants get growers, researchers and  other stakeholders together to quantify the  important pest research needs and priorities  for that particular crop. PMSP grants are  usually in the $10,000 to $15,000 range. 

“Together, those grant programs  allow us to get a good handle on what’s  happening, and what’s important,”  said Jim Farrar, the Center director.   

Work Groups

Work group grants bring a group of  researchers from different disciplines  or different regions together to develop  ideas that have the potential to become  larger projects. Two of the Center’s  current signature programs for example,  crop pest-loss assessment and weather- based pest modeling, began as work  groups. These grants require multistate  approaches, and are also typically  in the $10,000 to $15,000 range.   

Addressing IPM Issues

These are the Center’s biggest grants  and allow researchers to develop enough  preliminary data to be competitive when  applying for larger national awards. Funded  up to $70,000 over two years, they provide  enough money to fund a master’s student  for a few years and develop preliminary  findings and possibly a master’s thesis  to show the potential for future research. 

“If you think of IPM funding as a pyramid,  the top of the pyramid are the large national  programs, the Regional IPM grants and the  Agriculture and Food Research Initiative  grants,” Farrar said. “The AFRI grants  can be more than $1 million a year.” 

The Western IPM Center does not  administer those grant programs.   

Publications and Outreach

Publication and outreach grants can get  overlooked, but are a critical component  of the cycle because they get knowledge  developed during research phases out  to growers so they can apply it in the  field. These funds can also be used to  measure the effectiveness of earlier  projects and see if behaviors have  changed – a critical element to address. 

“It’s closing the loop,” Farrar said.  “You see if you’ve had an impact.”   

Tips for New Applicants 

The Western IPM Center is always eager  to work with new researchers, and Farrar  had this advice for first-time applicants: 

• Address a problem that  stakeholders care about, and be  able to document their concern. 

• Seek collaborators. The Center has a  regional mission and prefers multistate  collaborations. If the pest or crop  you’re examining only occurs in one  state, make that clear in any proposal. 

• Have a good plan for outreach at the  end of a project. Information that  doesn’t get back out to the growers,  pest managers or other stakeholders  doesn’t do anyone any good. 

• Watch our website for grant  announcements. We post important  ones on our home page at www.  wripmc.org, as well as the Funding  Opportunities page. (The News  & Announcements page is also  updated frequently and a good  source of IPM-related news.) The  application deadline is closed for  the 2013 funding cycle, but you  can always start planning for 2014. 

• If you have questions, call or email  and ask. We’re actually helpful folks.  Director Jim Farrar can be reached at  jjfarrar@ucdavis.edu or (530) 754-8378;  Associate Director Carla Thomas at  cthomas@ucdavis.edu, (530) 752-7010.     


Director’s Perspective

Comment Coordinators Keep Information Flowing

Now that I have a couple months of  experience as director, I want to share with  you one of the least-known aspects of the  Western IPM Center’s work: comment  coordination. Before becoming Director,  I had little exposure to this important  Center task. Comment coordination begins  with a “request for comment” from a  federal agency, usually originating from  the Environmental Protection Agency  and sent to the Centers via the Office  of Pesticide Management Policy. EPA  requests comments as part of the pesticide  regulation process in order to receive  information about actual pesticide use and  pest management practices in the field. 

Providing EPA with sound information  regarding pesticide use and the impact of  pesticide regulation decisions is vital for  the Western Region because of the great  variety of climates and crops – especially  minor crops – grown in our region. Many  pesticide labels, for example, have limits  on the total cumulative amount of product  that can be applied “per crop” or “per  season.” These terms may make sense from  the perspective of a northern temperate  climate. However, in the Western Region  we have cropping cycles that range from  three to four weeks for baby spinach in  Arizona and California, to “seasons” with  no clear beginning and end for tropical  perennial crops like cacao in Hawaii and the  Pacific Island  Territories.  Occasionally  USDA issues  a request for  comment  on proposed  regulatory  changes. For  example,  USDA recently  requested  comment on the  paperwork burden of reporting information  on honeybees, hives and honey production  to the National Agricultural Statistics  Service. 

To provide specific local information  representative of the range of crops and  cropping systems, the Western IPM  Center has three comment coordinators  in geographically distinct areas of the  West. They are Cathy Tarutani for Hawaii  and the Pacific Island Territories; Jane  Thomas for Washington, Oregon, Idaho,  Montana, Utah, California, and Alaska;  and Al Fournier for Arizona, Nevada, New  Mexico and arid Southeastern California.  Each of the comment coordinators  maintains an extensive network of contacts  among commodity groups, growers,  extension agents, state IPM coordinators,  university scientists, state agricultural  agencies, pesticide safety educators,  Western Region IR-4, Western Sustainable  Agriculture Research and Extension and  other interested partners. 

When I receive a request for comment,  I forward the request to the appropriate  comment coordinators. They then  communicate with their network of  contacts, summarize the responses and  forward the information to the requesting  agency. On the Western IPM Center  website, we maintain a webpage of  comments dating back to a 2002 comment  on methyl parathion. The web page is  arranged by topic or active ingredient, but  future plans are to also allow user to view  the information arranged by by date.  If you have ever been contacted by Al,  Cathy or Jane and provided information  for a comment request, thank you  for participating and helping us to  communicate real-world pest management  practices and needs to the federal agencies. 

If you are not in the comment coordination  network and are willing to participate,  please send me an email (jjfarrar@ucdavis.  edu) with your name, location and a brief  description of your relevant crop or pest  experience and I will get you connected.  You will probably be asked for comment  only once or twice per year, but your small  investment of time can have a big impact  on pest management regulations. 


Pacific Update - Guam

Team helps combat recent decline of Guam ironwood trees

In 2002, a local farmer noticed several Guam ironwood trees that were planted in a single-row windbreak were dying. By 2005, what became known as Ironwood Tree Decline was

widespread across the island, with some sites seeing more than half of their ironwoods in distress.


The University of Guam Cooperative Extension Service’s Plant Health and Pest Management group – along with 11 other agencies – began studying the causes of the tree die-off.

Led by Cooperative Extension’s Robert Schlub, the group recently published a 28-page report examining the history of the tree on Guam and its research into the causes of its decline.


Support for the research came from many sources, including the Western IPM Center, and led to major advances in understanding the role of bacteria in the decline complex.

These findings will be presented in two posters at the American Phytopathological Society - Mycological Society of America joint meeting this August in Austin, Texas.

The guide also offers advice on combatting Ironwood Tree Decline through tree health care recommendations, including recommendations on site and soil evaluation, tree installation and post-planting care.


The guide is on the University Guam website under Cooperative Extension and Tree Health at: www.uog.edu/dynamicdata/ANRtreehealth.aspx?id=2&p=1445


IPM in Action

New Report on Onions Shows Gains and Needs

For Las Cruces onion and pepper farmer  Steve Lyles, following integrated pest  management principles is a necessity.  Much of his acreage is right on the  outskirts of town, so he’s been proactive in  managing dust, noise and pesticides. 

“I farm around one school, so we have  to be careful of what and when we spray,”  he told Growing Produce in a profile  published in 2012. “We monitor the insect  populations closely and use the softest  chemistries available.” 

Lyles has won awards for his progressive  approach to farming, including the New  Mexico State University Leyendecker  Agriculturalist of Distinction award for  2013, but more and more onion growers  are also adopting IPM practices and  benefitting from IPM strategies, according  to Howard Schwartz, a professor of plant  pathology at Colorado State University.  Schwartz is the lead author of a recently  published national Pest Management  Strategic Plan for dry bulb storage onions,  which was created with Western Integrated  Pest Management Center funding. 

“We’re seeing good adoption of IPM by  growers, either as individuals, or coming  from crop consultants,” he said. “We’ve  been pleased with that.” 

Managing Thrips 

The recently published PMSP updates a  2004 document that was less national in  scope, and highlights some of the advances  made over those nine years. One area  that’s improved is managing thrips and the  Iris yellow spot virus that they carry. 

“Cultivar selection is making a difference  when it comes to thrips,” explained  Mark Uchanski, an assistant professor  of horticulture at New Mexico State  University who contributed to the new  onion Pest Management Strategic Plan  and is involved in related research. “More  glossy and green foliage is less attractive  to thrips. More waxy and blue foliage is  more attractive.” 

Plant breeders are also developing more  vigorous onion cultivars as well. 

“They’re better able to stand up to the  feeding of thrips,” Schwartz explained.  “That’s one thing we’re able to share  through field trials.” 

Both Schwartz and Uchanski see  widespread adoption of other IPM  practices by onion growers trying to  manage thrips, including crop rotation,  better management of debris and weeds  where thrips populations can grow, and  pest scouting to time pesticide applications  appropriately. 

“They’re heavy on the scouting to  make sure they stay ahead of the curve,”  Uchanski said. “I’m seeing growers who  will time or at least be aware of alfalfa  cutting in nearby fields because that will  cause thrips to move.” 

Despite the gains, thrips remain the  leading onion pest in the U.S., especially  when combined with the damage done by  Iris yellow spot virus. 

Other Pests and Pathogens 

Other major disease challenges for  onion producers are soil-borne and bulbinfecting  fungal and bacterial pathogens. 

“White rot is still an issue,” Schwartz  said, “and so are Fusarium, pink root and  Botrytis neck rot.” 

Fungicides and proper storage practices  can help combat losses to those diseases,  and Schwartz sees a need for a quick  bacterial and fungal diagnostic tool for the  onion industry. 

“There are 10 or 15 different bacterial  pathogens that can attack onions,” he said.  “A DNA-based test is being developed by  Brenda Schroeder at Washington State  University so you can blot a sample on a  card and within a few hours be able to say  what’s attacking your onions and be able  to treat it correctly.” 

And that’s one of the biggest benefits  of a new Pest Management Strategic  Plan: it identifies needs and helps direct  research going forward. The new PMSP  also integrates closely with other national  projects like the W2008 Research and  Extension Committee “Biology and  Management of Iris yellow spot virus,  Other Diseases and Thrips in Onions.” 

“Because of the PMSP, we’re on the  same page and organized,” Uchanski said.  “This was written by representatives of  the onion industry, USDA, academics and  growers and packers, so now when we  apply for a research grant, there’s weight  behind that request.” 

The dry bulb storage onion PMSP can be  downloaded at www.ipmcenters. 


Highlights of recent Western IPM Center-funded projects

Battling Invasive Weeds in an Urban Environment

Having a clear, consistent message and  speaking with one voice is helpful when  it comes to educating the public about  invasive species.  But around Portland, Oregon, speaking  with one voice is a challenge in an urban  area that includes two states, four counties  and dozens of cities. Homeowners and  land managers in the region could easily  hear several different recommendations or  control strategies for common weeds like  yellow archangel and old man’s beard. 

So in 2012, the Clackamas, Clark,  Multnomah and Washington County  Cooperative Weed Management Area  around Portland began a project with the  Western IPM Center to bring consistency  to the invasive species chaos. The  4-County CWMA, as it’s known, created a  team with members from the cities and Soil  and Water Conservation Districts within  its boundaries to put together fact sheets  identifying common invasive species and  spelling out IPM-based control strategies  for each. 

In the end, the team, led by Weed  Management Area Coordinator Elena  Cronin, created 10: American Pokeweed  • Blackberry  • English Ivy  • Garlic Mustard  • Giant Hogweed  • Lesser Celandine  • Old Man’s Beard  • Spurge Laurel  • Water Primrose  • Yellow Archangel 

Each fact sheet includes an overview  of the plant, pictures and descriptions of  how to identify it, lookalikes, information  on when to remove it, preferred and  alternative control methods and cautions  specific to each species or control method.  The fact sheet for Giant Hogweed, for  example, recommends calling a licensed  herbicide applicator since the plant’s sap  can seriously damage skin and eyes.  Most of the control methods outlined  in the fact sheets stress manual and  mechanical control, increasing awareness  of IPM practices and presenting herbicides  as one of an array of available tools. 

The group also held five trainings  around the Portland metro area, attended  by 60 people, and printed 2,000 copies  of each fact sheet, including 500 each in  Spanish. They are available for download  at www.4countycwma.org. 


New Mexico Project Creates Pollinator Resources for Growers

Gardeners, growers, land  managers, school groundskeepers  and others in New Mexico now  have a way to help honeybees and  native wild bees thrive, thanks  in part to a Western IPM Centerfunded  project led by Urban and  Small Farm IPM Specialist Tessa  Grasswitz at New Mexico State  University. 

During the demonstration and  outreach project, Grasswitz’s  team, working with the Natural  Resource Conservation Service’s  Plant Materials Center for New  Mexico, tested more than 100 species  of plants – mostly native – for their  ability to attract and provide habitat  for pollinators and other beneficial  insects.  Using test plots in four geographically  distinct sites throughout the state,  the team planted hedgerows of native flowering trees and shrubs as  “shelterbelts” at the edge of each site,  then planted a variety of flowering  perennials, biennials and annuals, as well  as native grasses to provide habitat for  ground-dwelling beneficial insects, to see  which were the most attractive to bees  and other beneficial species. 

Workshops were then held at each site to educate members of the public,  and the team produced two pocketsized  guides for growers, landscapers  and home gardeners. One is titled  “Pollinator Plants for New Mexico”  and lists the scientific and common  names for plants that attract bees, as  well as noting whether the plant is  commercially available, how easily  it self-seeds or can be propagated in  a greenhouse, and other important  notes. The other is the “Guide to  Native Bees of New Mexico.” 

In addition, the team produced  a full-color poster that includes  pictures and names of good plants for  pollinators, broken down into springflowering  shrubs, summer-flowering  annuals, summer-flowering perennials,  and autumn-flowering species.  The guides and the poster can all  be downloaded at http://aces.nmsu.  edu/ipm/pollinator-project.html 


Using Sex Pheromones to Bring the Prionus californicus Beetle to Heel in Hopyards and Some Fruit Orchards

Hops growers in the Northwest – as well as sweet cheery, apple and other fruit  growers around the nation – may soon  have a new tool to combat Prionus beetl es  thanks to research funded in part by the  Western IPM Center. 

The research team of Jim Barbour at  the University of Idaho, Jocelyn Millar  at the University of California, Riverside  and Lawrence Hanks at the University of  Illinois identified and synthesized a sex  pheromone produced by female Prionus  californicus beetles and hope to have a  commercial mating-disruption product in  large-scale trials as soon as next year. 


The Pest

 The adult Prionus californicus beetle is a  fierce-looking longhorn beetle about twoinches  long. The adult beetle doesn’t eat  or drink and has a short three-to-four-week  lifespan devoted to finding other beetles to  mate with.  The damage is done by the larvae. 

“The larvae are root-feeders,” Barbour  said. “They grow to about three inches  long, and one or two of them really make  a mess of hop roots and the roots of some  fruit trees. In fact, one old name for the  beetle was the Giant Apple Root-Borer.” 

Once a hop yard is infected, the only  effective control strategy is pulling up the  plants and leaving the field fallow for two  or three years. Fumigation with various  organophosphates is sometimes used, but  its effectiveness is questionable. 

“In Idaho, they are the most serious  hop pest,” Barbour said. “They are also a  problem in Washington as well, which is  the largest hop-producing state with about  25,000 acres in production.” 


The Project 

The research team set out to determine  if the Prionus beetle produces a sex  pheromone, and if so, could it be effectively  synthesized and used to monitor the beetle  or to directly managing the pest in masstrapping  or mating disruption approaches. 

“There were reasons to suspect  pheromones were involved,” Barbour  explained. “The antennae of the males  and females are different, and the females  adopt a pheromone-emitting posture. Also,  these are nocturnal beetles with no bright  colors, and they had to find each other  somehow.”

 The team began with behavioral  experiments with male and female beetles  to determine if a pheromone was driving  mating behavior. It was. They then began  experiments to collect and identify the  compound. Once that was done, they  created and began testing the synthetic  version to see if it was equally effective in  attracting male beetles. It is. 

“Since then, it’s been shown to attract a  number of Prionus beetles, not just Prionus  californicus,” Barbour said. “It works with  at least eight different species in North  America and one in Europe.” 

Prionus beetles are problems in cherry  orchards in Utah, apple orchards in the  West and New York and pecans in the  South.  The team tested its compound in both  mass-trapping strategies and mating disruption  approaches. In the former, the  bait scent is placed in traps that beetles fall  into and can’t escape and they die in the  traps. In the latter, enough of the scent is  released to saturate an area so the beetles  can’t follow it back to a female and they  die naturally without having mated. 

“Mating disruption is easier in some  respects because you don’t have traps to  manage,” Barbour said. “It takes more  work up front to show that the beetles are  not finding each other to mate.” 

The team’s tests showed both approaches  work.


The Impact 

Barbour’s current research team is  working with Pacific Biological Control  and Western Region IR-4 to get the  compound labeled as a mating disruption  agent for use in hops and sweet cherries.  Since both are small-acreage crops,  expanding the approved use to other crops  like apples and pecans could help make the  product more economically viable. 

“We have an IR-4-funded grant now  for a project demonstrating this works as a  mating disruption tool,” Barbour said. “We  hope that by 2014 we’ll have large-scale  trials going with it.” 

And that’s good news for hop growers  throughout the Northwest.

“This certainly will be welcome news in  hop yards and to the hop commissions in  various states,” he said. 


New Communication Plan Means New-Look Publications

There’s something missing from this  issue of The Western Front, but hopefully  you didn’t miss it. 

“Nowhere, except right here and for the  last time, will readers see the acronym  WIPMC,” said Steve Elliott, the new  writer for the Western IPM Center.  “Wading through an alphabet soup of  acronyms is no fun for anyone and doesn’t  help us connect with all the people who are  important to us throughout the West and in  Washington, D.C.” 

To improve those connections, the Center  has developed a new communications  strategy that identifies its important  audiences and ways to better communicate  with each of them. Writing that’s accessible  and conversational is one of those ways. 

Another key element of the strategy has  been updating and improving the Center’s  website at www.wripmc.org. 

“The web is a work in progress, but  the home page is much cleaner and  better organized, and the News &  Announcements page is now updated  regularly,” Elliott said. “If you haven’t  visited the site in a while, it’s a good time  to take a look because we are continually  making it better and easier to navigate.” 

Also new are a series of Western IPM  Center fliers, highlighting what the Center  does, the funding it provides, some of the  projects it’s undertaken and the  partnerships it’s created. They  are available for download at  www.wripmc.org. 

And those steps are only  the beginning. The Center  will be communicating  with its stakeholders  more regularly through  email updates, and with  the agricultural press and  commodity groups through  news releases. And we’re  open to suggestions.

“Good communication  doesn’t flow in just  one direction. Good  communication is a twoway  conversation,” Elliott  said. “So we want to hear  from our stakeholders  about how we’re doing and  what they’d like to see from  us. How can our website  be more useful, and how  can this newsletter be  improved? Are there  better ways to reach you? 

If you have feedback, we want  to hear it.” 

Steve Elliott can be reached at  sfelliott@ucdavis.edu. 


State Briefs

Growing Organics at High Elevations 

More than 100 producers, educators and industry  support people – mostly small-scale farmers  interested in learning how to grow in a high-elevation,  arid environment with cold winters and hot summers  – attended a highly successful organic workshop in  Salt Lake City in February.  The primary customer base for these farmers is local  residents seeking an organic and sustainable food  supply. Workshop presentations included orchard  fertility, weed and water management through longterm  groundcover systems, organic pest management  in vegetable crops, principles of sustainable weed  management, organic peach production practices,  guidelines for organic certification and more. A second workshop is planned for June 11 to showcase  organic fruit and vegetable research at the Utah State  University farm in Kaysville. Both are sponsored by Utah  State University Extension.   


Videos Spotlight IPM Innovators 

The California Department of Pesticide Regulation  recognizes organizations that reduce pesticide use through  its IPM Innovator Awards. Recipients are role models  for voluntarily adopting effective reduced-risk pest  management strategies and for their willingness to share  those strategies with others.  On YouTube, the department is now sharing some of  those success stories through videos available at www.  youtube.com/user/CaliforniaPesticides. The videos feature  Marin County Parks, Dixon Ridge Farms and Gallo’s Sonoma  Vineyards, and Spring Mountain Vineyards. Nominations  for the IPM Innovator Awards can be submitted year round  at www.cdpr.gov/docs/pestmgt/impinov/nominate/  nominate_ipm.htm 


The Western Front is published three  times a year by the Western Integrated Pest  Management Center, located at UC Davis, One  Shields Ave., Davis, CA, 95616. The newsletter  is available online at www.wripmc.org.  The Center is supported by a grant from USDA National  Institute of Food and Agriculture.  Director:  Jim Farrar (530) 754-8378  jjfarrar@ucdavis.edu  Writer:  Steve Elliott (530) 752-7011  sfelliott@ucdavis.edu