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Evaluation of a Push-Pull System for the Management of <i>Frankliniella</i> Species (Thysanoptera: Thripidae) in Tomato

Tyler-Julian, Kara, Funderburk, Joe, Srivastava, Mrittunjai, Olson, Steve, Adkins, Scott
Insects 2018 v.9 no.4
Bidens, Frankliniella occidentalis, Frankliniella tritici, Orius insidiosus, Solanum lycopersicum, adults, companion crops, females, field experimentation, flowers, foliar application, hosts, integrated pest management, kaolin, larvae, males, mulches, pests, tomatoes
A push-pull strategy for reducing populations of the thrips Frankliniella occidentalis (Pergande), F. bispinosa (Morgan) and F. tritici (Fitch) in tomato was evaluated. Push components consisted of ultraviolet (UV)-reflective mulch and foliar applications of kaolin and the pull component consisted of the companion plant Bidens alba (L.). Replicated field experiments were conducted in 2011 and 2012. Adult and larval thrips were reduced by UV-reflective mulch during early and mid-flowering of tomato. Spray applications of kaolin were effective in reducing adult and larval thrips during early, mid- and late-flowering. The pull effects of the B. alba companion plants were additive and sometimes interactive with the push effects of UV-reflective mulch and kaolin in reducing the adult males of each thrips species and the females of F. bispinosa. The strategy was not effective in reducing the adult females of F. tritici and F. occidentalis. In addition to attracting the Frankliniella species adults, the companion plants were hosts for the thrips predator Orius insidiosus (Say). The companion plants combined with UV-reflective mulch and kaolin proved effective as a push-pull system for suppressing flower thrips, including F. occidentalis which is a serious pest of tomato worldwide.