See tips for lebbeck mealybug management to protect developing fruit, from the UF/IFAS Tip of the Week.

The UF/IFAS Tip of the Week article maintains that “As the March bloom tapers off and fruit begin to set, it is time to think about lebbeck mealybug management.” Damage from lebbeck mealybugs can lead to aborted fruit or fruit that cannot be sold. The article also maintains that “Early-season management is critical to both reducing early fruit damage and to maintaining reduced pest populations throughout the growing season.” See tips from the article for managing lebbeck mealybugs.

Lebbeck Mealybug Management Tips

The article shared tips for lebbeck mealybug management, sharing that “Management for lebbeck mealybug is evolving and will change over time. Management actions discussed in this Tip of the Week reflect current knowledge of the pest and management options.”

Tips include:

  • While “lebbeck mealybug populations are not tied to flush…there is generally an increase in the juvenile population beginning in late March and continuing into June. Survivors of this cohort will develop into the reproductive stages, continuing to produce offspring through the summer and fall.”
  • “Optimal management for this pest starts with a systemic chemistry prior to fruit set.”
  • “Check the label for bee safety as flowers and the bees that are attracted to them are also present.”
  • “In May or June, a contact chemistry that is also effective for Asian citrus psyllids should be applied to further reduce populations.”
  • “During the peak of summer heat, mealybugs do not appear to proliferate at a similar rate to late spring and early fall. Population development picks up again in October, and crawlers can be suppressed with most contact chemistries.”
  • “In addition to insecticides, many of the adjuvants currently in use in citrus add to juvenile, and sometimes adult, mortality.”

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