Photo: Michelle Tribe, Flickr
One of the most important factors in pest management is proper identification of pests and proper application and coverage of pesticides. It does not require an entomology degree to identify insects, these days there is a lot of information online that can help you identify cannabis pests. Proper identification of insects can make the difference between success and failure. With a good eye and a microscope, if you do your research, you can control most insects in your garden.
No matter what you are using you must ensure you get the proper coverage on your plants in order to control pests. The temperature and humidity of your cultivation area, as well as the PH and temperature of the pesticide solution, all factor into the success of your IPM. For example, PFR 97 needs to be applied at a higher humidity range, around 70% to be most effective. In some areas this is not possible so repeated applications may be required to ensure the application is effective. A high PH or alkaline PH can cause alkaline hydrolysis which will make your pesticide solution less effective and will dictate how long your pesticides remain effective after they are mixed. It is therefore important to use your pesticide solution as soon as you make it; don’t let it sit around for long periods of time before use or it will be less effective.
The misuse of or improper handling of pesticides is not only unlawful and dangerous to human health, but can also cause environmental damage to waterways and wildlife. The direct effects of pesticides on wildlife include acute poisoning, immunotoxicity, endocrine disruption, reproductive failure, altered morphology and growth rates and changes in behavior. Pesticides can indirectly impact wildlife through reduction of food resources and refuses, starvation due to decreased prey availability, hypothermia and secondary poisoning. Section 1602 of the California Fish and Game Code governs requirements for permitting of any project where pesticides will be used, and strictly regulates the disposal of all waste and run-off. It is imperative to know the regulations and to abide by them, or heavy fines will ensue!
Cannabis cultivation facilities that are located on land that was previously used for conventional agriculture, or located near vineyards or other agricultural crops that are heavily sprayed with harmful pesticides, run a very high-risk failing testing. This is because of either spray drift from nearby agriculture, or residual pesticides and heavy metals left in the soil from previous crops that were using pesticides banned for cannabis cultivation. Accordingly, if you’re going to be growing outdoors or in a greenhouse, it is imperative that you get a soil and water test prior to cultivation, so you can determine if there is any potential for test failures due to pesticides or heavy metals in the soil or water in that area.
Starting with an immaculate vegetation room is crucial to maintaining pest and mold free plants in the flowering cycle.
Just because a product is certified organic does not mean that it can be used, or that it is safe to be consumed or ingested. Oftentimes when cannabis flower alone is tested it will not fail or show a detectable amount of pesticides or heavy metals. However, when that flower is turned into concentrates, banned substances are then detected in testing, leading to test failures.
The best way to control a pest infestation in the flowering cycle is at the very beginning on day one. You must start aggressively, with a three-way control consisting of a contact kill and preventative during days 1-14; preventative and biological control during days 10-18; and then release predator bugs on day 25, for optimal results. Knocking back the population with an effective contact kill pesticide early on is essential to ultimately lowering populations throughout the grow cycle, so that you can spray a biological control to preclude them from returning, before you release the predatory bugs at the end of the cycle.
The application of pesticides requires certification from the state agricultural department. In certain situations, depending on the type of pesticide and method of application, a license may even be required. The application of pesticides without proper certification is against the law. Applying pesticides in a manner that is not in accordance with the label and instructions is also a violation of law.
Cultivation & Growing The Beginner’s Guide to Integrated Pest Management From formulating the plan to worker safety, pesticide regulations and REI times – This is the
Grandevo CG for whitefly, russet mites, mealybug, thrips, aphids
Foliar: 0.62-1.85 tbsp/gal of water. Apply at 7 day intervals. Alternate with Venerate CG.
Rates: There is flexibility in the rate between the range provided on the label. It is always important to remember to use the low rate when low infestation or as a preventative treatment and use the higher rate of the range during breakouts. Always follow label recommendations.
CannaCribs visits Yerba Buena Farms, the largest organic cannabis grower in Oregon. In this segment they discuss Yerba Buena’s IPM strategy.
*In Illinois you cannot apply pesticide at the flowering stage.
Venerate CG and Grandevo CG are both bioinsecticides derived from natural bacteria that when used in a weekly preventative spray rotation offer exceptional control of many cannabis insects.
Regalia CG for overall plant health and Powdery Mildew control
– Start at transplant with Regalia CG. Using Regalia CG as a foliar spray & drench is the best way to use Regalia CG
– Using Regalia CG as a soil drench at transplant at 2 tbsp./gallon, or root dip at 1 tbsp./gallon
– Once plants are established (minimum 10 days after a transplant treatment), use Regalia CG as a soil drench every 10 days at the rate of 2 tbsp./gallon
– For foliar use, apply 2-4 tbsp. /gallon, applied at 2 gallons (per 1,000 sq. ft.) every week (7 days)
We used to treat reactively for high infestations but we have incorporated a full IPM program including your Venerate, Grandevo and Regalia CG products. We haven’t had any issues the last two cycles and our plants are healthy and thriving!
– Jack, The Grow Stop
Strong return on investment: Decreased damage = Increased yields
Manage mites, powdery mildew, thrips, aphids and more with Regalia CG, Regalia MAXX, Venerate CG, Grandevo CG for Cannabis, Hemp, Marijuana where legal