Here are summaries of some of the IPM research, innovations and projects going on in Oregon, or benefitting Oregon agriculture, communities and natural areas. Projects listed here are not necessarily funded by the Western IPM Center.


Growers Helping Growers Avoid a Devastating Cranberry Disease

It sounds like an ad for a 1950s drive-in horror movie: Zombie plants emerge from New Jersey bogs! Can experts stop their catastrophic cross-county crawl before it’s too late?  But this is not “The Day of the Triffids” meets “Creature from the Black Lagoon.” Instead, it’s the latest Western Integrated Pest Management Center-funded research, a bi-coastal project looking to keep West Coast cranberry farms safe from false blossom disease, an insect-spread pathogen that’s plaguing East Coast cranberry producers.

Work Group Aims to Make New Endangered Species Rules Workable

“If it’s so complex that it’s impossible, then no one wins.”

That was the key takeaway from a recent two-day workshop in Vancouver, Washington about implementing new U.S. Environmental Protection Agency pesticide-use rules to protect endangered and threatened species.

Oregon Research Improves Residual Toxicity Warnings to Benefit Bees and Growers

It’s the kind of situation that can spiral downhill quickly. Beekeepers providing hives for pollination feel their bees are suffering excessive losses and fear improper insecticide use is to blame. Growers insist they are following label requirements and using necessary insecticides correctly to protect the bees. Both sides believe they are doing everything right, yet the outcomes are all wrong.

Testing "Electric Mulch" for Weed Control

"Electric mulch" uses small solar panels to charge stainless steel screens with a low-power electric current to prevent weed growth in vineyards, orchards or other high-value crops like blueberries. In early tests in New Mexico, it's working.

A Humble Hedgerow Serves Pollinators and Beneficial Insects

In an expansive field of organically grown blueberries at Humbug Farms in Independence, Oregon, the most interesting rows aren’t blueberries at all. Instead, they are carefully chosen rows of (mostly) native flowering shrubs that provide food for wild bees and habitat for beneficial insects. Hurray for the humble hedgerow.

Hoping a Tiny Wasp Has a Huge Impact in Controlling Spotted Wing Drosophila

As South Korean imports go, Ganaspis brasiliensis will never have the popular cachet of pop sensations BTS or TV dramas like Squid Game, but for small fruit growers the tiny wasp might become the biggest superstar of all. That’s because Ganaspis brasiliensis is a parasitic wasp that lays eggs into the larvae of the spotted-wing drosophila fruit fly, an invasive insect that’s been plaguing growers of small fruit and berries since it was accidentally introduced into the mainland United States in 2008.

Research Tests if Warm-Weather Weevils Can Boost Biocontrol of Puncturevine

Call it puncturevine, goatheads, devil’s thorn or whatever creative collection of expletives you mutter after sitting, kneeling or stepping barefoot onto it, Tribulus terrestris is one unpleasant plant. But with funding from the Western Integrated Pest Management Center, a researcher in New Mexico is measuring the cold-hardiness of weevils from different climactic zones to see if biocontrol efforts in cool northern climes could be boosted by importing warm-weather weevils from southern deserts.

Group Educates Health Care Providers about Pesticide-Related Illnesses

Pesticide Educational Resources Collaborative-Medical produces educational materials and resources on pesticides,  specifically targeting health care providers so they can recognize, treat and report pesticide-related illnesses.

Building Community Partnerships to Improve IPM Outcomes

Recent IPM extension projects in Oregon employed an approach called Adaptive Learner-Centered Education, which experts believe is well-suited for expanding IPM understanding.

IPM Experience is Helping Schools Plan for Reopening Amid COVID Concerns

As students return to classrooms in the fall of 2020, coronavirus is very much on people’s minds. In the West, having an IPM program in place seems to be helping schools plan for reopening.

Looking for Answers as Kochia Rolls Across the West

Kochia is a tumbling weed plaguing growers and ranchers from Central Canada to West Texas.

“It’s salt tolerant, heat tolerant, cold tolerant,” said Kent Davis, a crop consultant with Crop Quest in Colorado. “I want to kill the damn stuff, there’s no question about it, but you have to admire it at the same time.”

Educating an Urban Public and Land Managers about Invasive Weeds

Having a clear, consistent message and speaking with one voice is helpful when it comes to educating the public about invasive species. Here's how the area around Portland, Oregon did it.

IPM Training Program Targets Young Ag Professionals in the Pacific Northwest

Identification of pests and beneficials is one of the first principles of integrated pest management, and the core of a train-the-trainers program that’s been successfully improving the skills of young ag professionals in rural Oregon, Washington and Idaho since 2009.

Croptime Project Expands Pest-Modeling Website to Include Vegetable-Development Models

Pest managers are familiar with the concept of using degree days to predict pest outbreaks. Plants – at least in part – also develop based on temperature, so a team in Oregon is adapting a degree-day modeling system built for pest management to make a tool for vegetable growers to better plan their planting and harvesting dates.

Dropping the Emerald Ash Borer Quarantine Could Impact the West

The U.S. Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service has proposed lifting the domestic quarantine designed to slow the spread of emerald ash borer, an action that could speed the destructive insect’s introduction into Western states that have so far kept it at bay.

Using IPM Techniques to Battle Bed Bugs in Public Housing

Public housing presents unique pest-management challenges, including rapid turnover of residents, language and cultural barriers and even second-hand clothing and furniture. And those pest problems – especially when bedbugs are involved – can lead residents to resort to some pretty drastic and harmful pest control strategies.

Feral Swine Wreak Havoc

As pests go, wild pigs are huge – and hugely effective.

Developing IPM Resources for Non-Ag Audiences

A new effort in Oregon aims to provide just the right amount of pest and pest-management information to homeowners, landscapers and public agencies using a responsive website.

Pest or Beneficial: Earwigs in Apples

For growers, a fundamental element of integrated pest management is knowing what pest and beneficial species are in your fields. But what if there’s an insect and no one knows if it’s good or bad? That was the question for apple growers about earwigs.

What's Plaguing that Peony?

Proper identification of a disease is the critical first step for growers to apply the correct treatment. In peonies, proper disease identification was a problem. If a plant was diseased, growers assumed that their plants were sick with Botrytis gray mold. The reality was more complex.