October 10, 1997
While many Iowans have undoubtedly seen the yellow-green, grapefruit-sized fruit at farmer's markets, supermarkets, garden centers, and other locations, few individuals know much about these rather unusual fruit. Questions abound. What are they? Where do they come from? Are they good for anything?
During the late summer, small, obscure insects known as pirate bugs make their presence known in a very convincing manner by biting with an impact that is out of proportion with their size. Their name describes their small size and their habits.
Pirate bugs are about 1/5 of an inch long, oval to triangular in shape, somewhat flattened and black with whitish markings on the back. They are beneficial as predators, feeding on small insects and the eggs of other insects. One pirate bug, the insidious flower bug, is an important predator of corn earworm eggs in corn fields.
Continuing instruction courses (CIC's - 1997) for commercial pesticide applicators are listed below. Continuing education courses are approved for specific certification categories. Mailings with registration information for these programs are sent to companies or applicators who are certified in each of these categories. If you are a certified commercial pesticide applicator but do not receive registration information 3 weeks before the program, call the Entomology Department at 515-294-1101.
Amaryllis are popular flowering bulbs which are grown for their large, spectacular blooms during the winter months. Bulbs are available pre- planted in pots or unpotted.