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Botanical Insecticides (version 2013)
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Botanical Insecticides (version 2013)


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This presentation is part of a video series we are developing for a course module to help organic farmers and gardeners. The video is under production and will be available shortly at …

This presentation is part of a video series we are developing for a course module to help organic farmers and gardeners. The video is under production and will be available shortly at Please consult your county Extension office for full recommendations and check with your supplier for organic insecticides. Products can also be purchased online.

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  • 1. BOTANICAL INSECTICIDES FORVEGETABLE PRODUCTIONORGANIC IPM – PART 1ByAyanava MajumdarExt. Entomologist251-331-8416William EastRegional Extension AgentNeil KellyRegional Extension Agent
  • 2. What are BOTANICAL insecticides?Insect toxins derived from certain plants.Quick action on target pests.Broad spectrum action (non-selective).Do not persist in the environment.2
  • 3. PYRETHRIN: BASICS• Derived from Chrysanthemum cinerariaefolium• Caution: Do not mix with soap!• Examples: PyGanic (5% EC, OMRI-approved), EverGreen(6% EC)3
  • 4. PYRETHRIN: TARGET APPLICATION• Target insects: Aphids, cucumber beetles, caterpillars...• Best used against small-sized and immature insects.• Short residual – reapply frequently!• Add synergist like PBO to increase efficacy.4
  • 5. Fruit quality with Pyganic (pyrethrum)(Cullman, AL, 2012)Untreated check Pyganic foliar90% fruitdamage30% fruitdamage
  • 6. NEEM: BASICS• Derived from the seeds of Azadirachta indica.• Active ingredient is azadirachtin.• Available as azadirachtin-containing products, oils & soaps.• Examples: Neemix, Molt-X (farm products), MontereyNeem Oil (garden use)6
  • 7. NEEM: TARGET APPLICATION• Neem has systemic properties; reduced lettuce aphidson seedlings (Palumbo et al. 2001).• Best against immature insects as foliar spray.• Tank-mix & premixes are also effective.7
  • 8. Aphid control in Collards using Neem Tank-mix(Brewton, AL, 2010)Arthropod Management Tests, 2012, Vol. 37Neem or Molt-X tank-mixed at full rate with BotaniGard(microbial) or Suffoil-X (paraffinic oil) gave good aphid control.
  • 9. ROTENONE: BASICS• Derived from Derris roots. Organic approved till 2005.• Caution: Extremely toxic to fish.• Products with 1% rotenone are available commerciallybut are difficult to find.9
  • 10. SABADILLA• Derived from the seeds of sabadilla lily.• Good activity against thrips and other pests.• Examples: Veratran D (0.2%) – on fruit crops.10
  • 11. 11OTHER BOTANICAL PESTICIDES• Ryania: Derived fromRyania speciosa• Slow acting stomachpoison.• Commercial products aredifficult to find. Example:Ryanicide with 0.2%ryania (Progressive Agri-Systems, PA).• Prohibited by NOP.RYANIA• Nicotine: Derived fromtobacco (Nicotianatabacum). Formulationsmay have 40% nicotinesulfate.• High mammaliantoxicity restrictsmarketing.• Prohibited by NOP.NICOTINE
  • 12. VARYING TOXICITY OF BOTANICALS12U.S. EPA ToxicityCategoriesClass 3: Pyrethrum,Neem“CAUTION” on LabelOrganic ApprovedClass 1: Nicotine“DANGER” on LabelProhibited SubstanceOral LD50 (rats)Pyrethrins:1,200 mg/kgNeem:13,000 mg/kg
  • 13. • Botanical insecticides are broad-spectrum.• Many botanicals are toxic to fish (rotenone,pyrethrin).• Direct contact of pollinators with pyrethrincan be fatal.• Neem can be toxic to the immature stages ofbeneficial species (e.g., lady beetle).13NON-TARGET EFFECTS
  • 14. • Rotate botanicals withsofter products.• Avoid direct spray overbeneficial insects.• Spray at evening hourswhen bees are inactive.• Direct your spray to theunderside of leaves.• Let the product dry out toreduce toxicity.14HOW TO REDUCE NON-TARGET EFFECTS?
  • 15. • Insecticides for Organic Commercial andBackyard Vegetable Production, ANR-1428. [Online]• Pest Management in High Tunnel CropProduction, ANR-1432. [Online]• Consult a Regional Extension Agent fordesigning an optimal trap croppingsystem with accurate pest insectidentification.Additional Publications
  • 16. Acknowledgment• Commercial Horticulture IPM Team: MikeReeves, James Miles, Doug Chapman, NeilKelly, Chip East, Bethany O’Rear, Gary Gray• Home Ground IPM Team: Chris Becker, WillieDatcher, Mike McQueen, Sallie Lee, EllenHuckabay