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Feasibility of Reducing Slug Damage in Cabbage

Christy Hoepting, Extension Vegetable Specialist
Cornell Vegetable Program

Last Modified: March 17, 2014

Feasibility of Reducing Slug Damage in Cabbage
Slugs are an increasing threat to cabbage production: The board of the New York Cabbage Research and Development Program made slug control one of their highest research priorities for the first time in 2009. Slugs are considered a sporadic pest in cabbage and are favored by cool and moist conditions, especially where crop residues are left on the soil surface. In conventional production of cabbage, slugs tend to be a problem later in the growing season along tree lines and hedgerows and in weedy patches within the field. Slugs leave large holes in the leaves with the veins intact, and can be a contaminant in the heads when they squeeze between the leaves. During the cool wet growing season of 2009, slug contaminants were the cause of several rejected loads of cabbage in New York. It is predicted that the frequency of slug problems in cabbage will increase, because more cabbage is being grown in rotation following field corn. The newer varieties of field corn are Bt-tolerant and have tougher stalks that take longer to break down, thus, these fields have more crop residue and are more favorable for slugs. It is worthwhile to investigate whether there are cost effective means for growers to manage sporadic infestations of slugs in cabbage.

View the exciting results from our 2010 trial in the final report that follows.
 



Feasibility of Reducing Slug Damage in Cabbage: Final Report 2010 (pdf; 2168KB)

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Lorsban is Banned: What Now?

Cabbage maggot (CM) feeds on brassica seedlings by tunneling into the stem of the plant just below the soil line. Their feeding can result in unsightly and unmarketable produce in the case of root brassicas like turnips, and in stunting, reduced stand, and reduced yield in head and stem brassicas like cabbage and broccoli. Lorsban and other formulations containing the active ingredient chlorpyrifos were the first line of defense for control of cabbage maggot in several brassica crops, because 1) at ~$10 per acre, it was affordable, and 2) it was easy to apply and avoided worker exposure as a directed spray at the base of the plant.

Unfortunately, Lorsban and all of its generic products for food and feed uses were banned in New York as of July 31, 2021, and in the United States as of February 28, 2022. In the absence of Lorsban and other chlorpyrifos-containing insecticides, NY brassica growers have 6 products belonging to 4 chemical classes available to manage cabbage maggot. This article, Lorsban is Banned: How to Control Cabbage Maggot in Brassicas Now?, written by Cornell Vegetable Program Specialist Christy Hoepting and Brian Nault of Cornell AgriTech, provides our "2022 Top Picks" to use instead of Lorsban plus results of Cornell research trial results related to application method, rate, and cabbage maggot control.


Propagating Strawberry Plants Through Runners

The production of strawberry plants is challenging due to the rigorous sanitation needs that must be met, especially in field propagation settings, but also in greenhouse settings. To add to that, growers in New York may find it more difficult to obtain their preferred strawberry varieties in the coming years, as fewer nurseries are propagating strawberries. The solution: strawberry plug plants propagated from runners in a controlled environment such as a greenhouse or high tunnel.

Plug production of rarer varieties that do well in New York State will fetch a higher price than dormant bare-root plants due to the higher cost of production and lower availability in the Northeast, especially if plants are available in August. Propagating Strawberry Plants Through Runners, written by Anya Osatuke of CCE Harvest NY and Brad Bergefurd of The Ohio State University, only discusses production and marketing potential of plug plants because successful field production of bare-root strawberries is very difficult to achieve without the use of highly restricted soil fumigants. 



Cornell Commercial Vegetable Guidelines Available

The 2022 Cornell Integrated Crop and Pest Management Guidelines for Commercial Vegetable Production are now available!

Written by Cornell University specialists, this publication is designed to offer producers, seed and chemical dealers, and crop consultants practical information on growing and managing vegetable crops in New York State. Topics include general culture, nutrient management, transplant production, postharvest handling, organic production, and managing common vegetable crop pest concerns. A preview of the Vegetable Guidelines can be seen online.

Cornell Crop and Pest Management Guidelines are available as a print copy ($43.50), online-only access ($43.50), or a package combining print and online access ($61.00). Shipping charges will be added to your order. Cornell Guidelines can be obtained through many local Cornell Cooperative Extension offices (call to confirm availability), or from The Cornell Store at Cornell University or call (844) 688-7620.


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