Integrated Pest Management for Australian Apples & Pears
Integrated pest management (IPM)is a philosophy of pest control founded on the principles of ecology. In practice, it involves using several control tactics based on a knowledge of the crop, pests and associated natural enemies to avoid crop loss and minimize harmful effects on the environment. Implementing IPM requires an understanding not only of insect and mite biology and ecology but also of the entire orchard system. This includes the plants and animals that comprise the orchard community, as well as consideration of contributions from the surrounding habitat. The orchard system also takes into account financial, physical and human aspects of orchard operations.More simply, IPM involves evaluating your pest problems and then applying the most appropriate solution.
IPM requires a more tolerant approach to pest control than traditional insecticide-based programs. Eliminating all insects and mites from the orchard is not the objective of IPM. Natural enemies are to be conserved as much as possible and some damage, especially to foliage, is tolerated. For example, pests that attack the foliage can usually be allowed to build to levels higher than those that attack the fruit.