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Integrated Pest Management IPM

This is a sustainable approach to pest control. Problems may be avoided with cultural measures such as placing plants in their proper environment: correct light, water, soil. Learn to identify beneficial insects. Assassin bugs a.k.a wheel bugs, for example, prey on such plant pests as Japanese beetles. Only 3% of our insects harm crops. Another preventative measure is to observe your plants daily for any changes. The sooner a problem is noted the easier it is to resolve. For example, when you notice Japanese beetles on your plants you could tap them into a jar with water on the bottom. Close the lid. When they are dead tap them onto your compost pile. Avoid Japanese beetle bag traps as they attract beetles to your yard.

Read PSU's Entomology Dept's What is IPM ? Integrated Pest Management, to learn the safest pest control methods. Site includes Pest Problem Solver.



Read and follow directions on the pesticide label which is a legal document. For further info call the PA Dept of Envir. Protection 570.327.3646 or your landfill or transfer station to find out how to properly dispose of a pesticide.


Pesticide Alternatives

Alternatives to Pesticides – fact sheets on control of specific pests from NCAP (Northwest Coalition for Alternatives to Pesticides)
Biological Control News - U of WI, searchable newsletters 1996-2000.

Biological Control: A Guide to Natural Enemies in North America - Cornell U. guide to biological controls of insect, disease, and weed pests.

Natural Enemies to Insects - U. of IL; photos and brief text.
Organic solutions – Cornell U. and Northeast Organic Farming Assoc. of NY; guide for farmers

Pesticide Profiles

If you choose to use a pesticide read, understand and follow all label instructions before using any pesticide product. Never use any pesticide in a manner inconsistent with the U.S. EPA approved labelling.  The label is the law.

Greenbook Crop Protection Reference –Complete Herbicide, Insecticide, Fungicide Info

EXTOXNET Pesticide Information Profiles – multiple universities; scroll down page to view Pesticide Information Profiles and other links.

National Pesticide Information Center – Oregon State and U. S. EPA; general and technical pesticide fact sheets, contact info for manufacturers; signal words topic fact sheet, etc.

Pesticide Product Label System - U.S. EPA



Home Garden Pest Problem Solver - PSU horticultural info; choose from list along right column.

Insect and Mite Control on Woody Ornamentals and Herbaceous Perennials - OSU

Integrated Pest Management IPM - PSU

Landscape Pests - U of IL; photos and text, two sets of Bad Guys.

Ohioline Yard & Garden – OSU; insects & pests, beneficial insect sources (source listed for Danville does not exist).  

Pennsylvania Pesticide Information Retrieval System PAPIRS – PA Dept. of Ag.

Pesticide Education Program - PSU

Public Health Pest Problem Solver - PSU; scroll entire page.

Solution Source - Pesticide Safety, PSU


Wildlife Pests


A Homeowner's Guide to Northeastern Bats and Bat Problems, PSU. 1.45 MB. Learn the benefits of bats such as a single bat's ability to consume 500 insects/hour, including mosquitoes. Big brown bats consume June bugs, cucumber beetles, green and brown stink bugs, and leafhoppers. Certain forest bat species consume tent caterpillar moths. Also learn how to get a bat out of your house and to prevent bats from entering buildings.

Bat Conservation International - "BCI's mission is to teach people the value of bats, to protect and preserve critical bat habitats, and to advance scientific knowledge through research."BC

Pennsylvania Bats - Photos and detailed info by PA Game Commission.



Deer Resistant Plants - PSU ; lists wide variety of plants considered deer resistant. As the PDF states, " Deer resistance is a relative term and will vary with the number of deer in an area, other food available, and time of year. Additional controls are recommended for areas with high deer populations." In other words, to be sure deer stay out of your garden read below about fencing.

Deer Resistant Flower Garden Plants & Choice Woody Shrubs - PSU Cooperative Ext. of Monroe, Carbon, & Pike Counties; colorful website with similar lists as above without PDF.


Fences and Deer-Damage Management: A Review of Designs and Efficacy - USDA National Wildlife Services National Wildlife Research Center, UNE-Lincoln, 2006; Regarding a 1985 study comparing high tensil electric fencing deer penetrated all fence designs except the Penn State 5-wire electric, p.196.


Low-Cost Slant Fence Excludes Deer from Plantings - VA Tech, VA Cooperative Extension, VA State U.'5-foot high electrically charged fence. mission is to teach people the value of bats, to protect and conserve critical bat habitats, and to advance scientific knowledge through research. 

Here is a  Master Gardener's solution to keeping deer and groundhog's out of their vegetable garden:

Above are pics of the electric fence we put up.  It was very easy to install and the most economical fencing system we could come up with.  The area we have fenced in is about 30 ft. x 90 ft.  We had daily and nightly raids in our garden before we put it up.  The critters included rabbits, groundhogs, and deer.  We also have skunks, opossums, racoons and just about any other critters you'd find in the PA "wilds".  Our spring garden was almost completely eaten away UNTIL we put up the fence.  Nothing has been eaten since.  Of course there is always the possibility that it may not last but for now ... everything looks great.  My fall plantings have remained intact.  Our tomatoes stopped getting eaten and we've been thrilled with the fence's effectiveness *so far.  Of course it will probably not be effective for the bears that roam around here, but for everything else, it has worked like a charm.  I've read that if deer are a problem and have gotten accustomed to "casual dining" within the garden that it might be wise to cut strips of aluminum foil, drape them over the fence every few feet, and apply peanut butter to the ends of the foil.  Deer will have a negative "shocking" experience and will learn to stay away.  We did not do this but apparently they got the message anyway.


A nice feature of electric fencing is that you can easily adjust the height of the lines and/or add a line or two.   Here's a link to where we got some of our information and ideas and modified them to suit our own situation: http://www.mrmcgregorfence.com/faq.htm 

We purchased all our equipment from a Tractor Supply store. Total cost including high voltage power supply was less than $230 with plenty of extra fencing strands.



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