Monday, January 24, 2011

Pest Management Plan

Integrated Pest Management

“Country Taste Farm” has adopted and uses IPM Practices on our Farm. Our Pest management Plan has been developed from information that has been provided by The Minnesota Department of Agriculture.
“The Minnesota Department of Agriculture's (MDA) Fruit and Vegetable Integrated Pest Management (IPM) program places emphasis on providing pest and pest management information to growers through the publication of newsletters, fact sheets, and manuals. It also provides useful related web site links. The information is provided to help growers gain a better understanding about the pests they encounter, and also as a way to provide growers with supplemental pest management practices that they might consider using in their operations. By expanding the number of options in their "IPM tool box", a grower increases his/her ability to combat pests by being able to choose from an array of available IPM practices”. (Taken from MDA IPM website.)

 Crops Grown
Alfalfa, apples, asparagus, assorted vegetables, mixed hay, Strawberries, sweet corn, vine crops, sweet corn, soybeans and field Corn.

Basic Plan includes
·         Crop Rotation
·         Resistant varieties
·         Close Observation (scouting)
·         Proper Nutrition and good water Management
·         Weed Control
·         Insect and Disease Control
·         Large animal Control.

Crop Rotation:
·         Soybean rotation to reduce Nitrogen use.
·         Vegetable crops are rotated to prevent disease
·         Choosing good planting sites some diseases live in soil a long time we avoid sites with past history of problems.
Resistance varieties:
·         As we have identified various disease, insect, and weed problems particular to our farm, we select varieties with resistant to meet our farm needs.
·         We use Certified Seeds and root stocks.
·         We choose crops especially well-suited for Minnesota and work well on our farm.
·         We stay in close contact with seed suppliers to receive detailed information on new varieties available for our area.
Close Observation:
·         Our Observation includes frequent scouting and written recordkeeping. This information is used to determined when and which controls to apply. For most organic labeled products timing and proper identification is extremely important.
·         We do not apply and control methods without identification.
·         Weather conditions are recorded; we increase our scouting during weather related conditions that increase Risk of disease and insects.
Proper Nutrition and good water Management:
·         Supplying plants with proper nutrition, healthy plants survive pest better. Annual Soil testing is a must, and we use both slow release granular fertilizer, and Liquid fertilizer through drip irrigation system.
·         Poor drainage or soil compaction can promote root problems; splashing water can spread waterborne disease. We use deep sub soil cultivation tool to break up any hand pan.
·         Improving soil structure is a major goal; annually we add large quantities of organic matter such as peat and compost.
Weed Control:
·         Plastic & natural mulch, Cultivation, Flaming, approved herbicides, for weed control

Insect and Disease Control:
·         Beneficial Insects are introduced in the high tunnel.
·         Beneficial Bacteria are mixed into the soil we use in our green house.
·         Insect traps are used in our apple orchard.
·         Use air blast sprayer for best coverage of crop, making products more effective.
·         Control products are labeled for Organic Crop Production or labeled for safe use.
·         I minimize spraying to minimize the effects on beneficial insects

Large animal Control:
·         Electric Fence and organic labeled spray for Animal Control

“Country Taste Farm” IPM Practices Reviewed 1/24/2011