September 15, 2017

Plant and Insect Diagnostic Clinic Update – September 15, 2017

The following are highlights and updates about samples and questions recently received in the Plant and Insect Diagnostic Clinic. Visit the PIDC's Facebook page for updates and more pictures. For more information on a particular disease or insect problem listed, follow the article (hyperlink) cited.

Plant Diseases and Insect Damage

The following highlights represent recent sample submissions from fruit, vegetables, and ornamental plants.  

It Was a Very Good Year for Painted Lady Butterflies

Painted lady butterflies at Reiman Gardens

Forcing Tulip Bulbs Indoors

Tulips are a welcome, colorful sight in spring.  However, it’s not necessary to wait until April or May to enjoy these spring-blooming favorites.  Tulip bulbs can be forced indoors to brighten the cold, gray days of winter.  If properly planned, tulips can be enjoyed indoors from January through March. 

To enjoy tulips in winter, gardeners must begin the forcing process in late summer or early fall.  Good quality bulbs, a well-drained potting mix, and containers with drainage holes in the bottom are needed to successfully force tulips indoors. 

Produce/Food Safety Training for Fruit & Vegetable Growers

Fruit and vegetable growers and others interested in learning about produce safety, the Food Safety Modernization Act Produce Safety Rule, Good Agricultural Practices, and co-management of natural resources and food safety should make plans to attend an upcoming Produce Safety Alliance Grower Training course.  This course is one way to satisfy the FSMA Produce Safety Rule requirement that requires “At least one supervisor or responsible party for your farm must have successfully completed food safety training at least equivalent to that received under standardized curriculum recognized

Planting Daffodils

Fall is the time to plant multiple types of spring-flowering bulbs, including daffodils.  See the Iowa State University Extension & Outreach Yard & Garden news release from September 13 to learn more about the best sites for daffodils, plating depths and recommended cultivars.

Fall Application of Broadleaf Lawn Herbicides

Fall is an excellent time to apply broadleaf herbicides to lawns, but take care to do it properly and effectively. See the Iowa State University Extension & Outreach Yard & Garden news release from September 6 to learn more about timing, proper application and herbicide ingredients.