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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Research Project: BIOLOGICALLY BASED MANAGEMENT OF INVASIVE INSECT PESTS AND WEEDS

Location: Insect Behavior and Biocontrol Research Unit

Title: Evaluation of mustard plants and commercial oils as repellents against Bemisia argentifolii (Hemiptera)

Author
item LEGASPI, JESUSA

Submitted to: Meeting Abstract
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: October 26, 2012
Publication Date: N/A

Technical Abstract: A major insect pest of vegetables and horticultural crops in the southeast US is the silverleaf whitefly, Bemisia argentifolii. To control this whitefly, we evaluated the effect of commercial products and repellent plants. In laboratory tests, whiteflies were released in potted squash plants sprayed with mustard oil, garlic oil, horticultural petroleum oil, hot pepper wax and a water control. We found that the plants sprayed with the oils had significantly lower numbers of whiteflies compared to those sprayed with hot pepper wax or water alone. It is possible that whiteflies were repelled by volatiles from the oils. In a separate study, we studied the effect of plant volatiles on whitefly behavior using specialized odor detecting equipment. We found that whiteflies moved to collard plants and were repelled by giant red mustard plants. Our results indicate that giant red mustard plants and commercial oils such as mustard, garlic and horticultural oils are promising control agents against whiteflies in vegetable plants.

Last Modified: 9/10/2014
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