There are many different pests that can impact cannabis cultivation, including insects, fungi, bacteria, and viruses. Learn how to identify pests in your plant, and how to prevent them without the use of pesticides.
Integrated pest management involves using multiple control tactics in a coordinated and integrated manner to suppress or prevent damaging insect pests from affecting your crop. This means combining physical, biological, and chemical controls.
Rove beetles are small, red or black beetles that can cause serious problems for soil growers. They thrive on fungus gnats, a common pest for soil growers.
These insects are not dangerous to humans, but they can cause a huge amount of damage to the marijuana plant when left unchecked. As a result, experienced cannabis growers monitor their plants as much as possible to catch any pests early on and avoid allowing infestations to develop to their problematic levels.
Rather than relying on harmful chemical solutions, many growers are turning to natural methods of controlling pests. A few of these include using beneficial insects, planting companion plants and applying a range of organic repellents.
Insects that can help control pests in cannabis cultivation are lacewings, moths and beetles. These predatory insects can attack a wide range of soft-bodied pests including thrips, aphids and spider mites.
Lacewings are a particularly useful insect for cannabis cultivation because they can consume multiple pests at once. They will feed on thrips, aphids, whitefly and spider mites.
They are also a great source of protein for your plants. Their larvae can feed for up to 4 weeks before they pupate and reappear as adult beetles.
Aside from the obvious benefits of eating pests, lacewings are beneficial because they can help you avoid harmful chemicals and sprays. They can also reduce your pesticide exposure by helping to break down toxins and residues that are present in insecticides.
Another important benefit of lacewings is that they can be used over and over again to keep pest populations under control. They can be purchased in small bottles containing hundreds or thousands of eggs which can then be applied directly to the affected areas.
The only downside of lacewings is that they don’t live very long, so you may need to reapply them after some time has passed. Alternatively, you can mix up a solution of water and vinegar and use it to kill any beetles that you find.
Using a combination of beneficial insects and other natural remedies to control pests in your cannabis garden can help you to produce healthy, high-quality buds while avoiding the harmful effects of chemical pesticides. This can save you a lot of money and help you avoid the hassle of trying to deal with unwanted insect infestations.
While it is true that certain pests can wreak havoc on cannabis plants, there are many beneficial insects that you can use to help control pest infestations. These insects help to keep your crops healthy, add biodiversity to your garden, and increase their yields.
The first step to implementing beneficial insects is to develop an IPM plan for your crop. This involves developing a commitment to the type of pesticide program you wish to use and assessing your pest situation on a regular basis. This will also help you to decide how often to reintroduce the insects into the crop and at what rate.
One way to do this is by hiring a pest consultant who has experience with the industry and a good understanding of insect biology. A good consultant can guide you towards a natural solution for your pest problems that is both effective and sustainable.
Insects that are considered beneficial in cultivation include ladybugs, praying mantises, and lacewings. These insects can eat aphids and other soft-bodied insects that damage cannabis plants. They can also help reduce the population of whiteflies, which are another common pest.
If you are a grower who is interested in using beneficial insects, there are several companies online that offer this service. They can provide you with bugs that are shipped to your door and will arrive within 24 hours.
These bugs are easy to use and will quickly decrease the population of any pests in your crop. They are also safe to use as long as you follow the proper instructions.
To introduce ladybugs into your cannabis garden, release them in a place where they will not be disturbed and ideally at dusk or after dark. A few per square foot of cannabis is sufficient.
A few predator mites can be placed in your grow medium to eat the larvae and pupae of thrips and fungus gnats. These insects are not difficult to find, and can be purchased from a local garden centre or ordered online.
A nematode is another helpful insect species to add to your grow. Nematodes are microscopic worm-like creatures that live in the soil and can eat plant-eating pests like slugs, beetles, and cutworms. There are many different types of nematodes and it is important to select the right one for your growing conditions.
Insidious flower bugs
One of the most effective and natural pest control methods is to use beneficial insects. These are small, specialized bugs that help to reduce pest populations and can even prey on the pests themselves.
Some of the most common insect pests found in cannabis cultivation include aphids, whiteflies, spider mites and thrips. These pests can cause significant damage to your crop and are a major source of honeydew that causes sooty mold.
Ladybugs are an excellent source of aphid control and can be deployed in a greenhouse or outdoor growing area. These insects can be purchased from nursery or garden centers and released a few at a time. Make sure the soil in the container is hydrated before releasing them and release them at dusk or during the night.
Aphids are a small, polyphagous (sap-sucking) insect that can be very damaging to your cannabis plants. They feed on the sap of your plant and release excessive honeydew that can cause sooty mold.
The best way to prevent aphids is to keep your garden clean of aphid eggs and larvae. You can also spray your plants with aphid-killing fungicides or *Met52 EC and *PFR-97 microbial insecticide.
Another good insect-based pest control method is to spray your plants with a soapy solution to attract and kill adult thrips. This is a safe method that is effective if you have a large number of thrips and they are causing problems in your crop.
Fungus gnats are another pest that can cause serious damage to your cannabis crops if they eat your roots. These gnats lay their eggs in the soil, and upon hatching they take a fancy to fresh cannabis roots.
These gnats are commonly found in wet areas and can be difficult to see with the human eye. They are grey or black in color and have transparent bodies with long legs. They enjoy dark, moist environments.
The best way to control fungus gnats is to spray your plants with a pyrethrum solution. This can be done daily or several times a week. The pyrethrum can be mixed with water or a solution of dish soap, vanilla or almond extract and then sprayed on your plants.
Mycorrhizae are beneficial fungi that form symbiotic relationships with plants. They increase plant health and vigor, making them more resistant to environmental stresses. They also help cannabis growers control pests and diseases.
There are several methods to introduce mycorrhizae into the soil. You can sprinkle them on the ground, mix them into the water used to irrigate the plant, or apply them to the roots as a foliar spray. The most common method is to use a soluble mycorrhizae product that you create by mixing it with water.
One of the most effective ways to increase the amount of mycorrhizae in your soil is by adding compost. These nutrient-rich substrates are rich in microorganisms, including mycorrhizae, which thrive in organic matter. If you do not have compost on hand, you can also purchase commercially available mycorrhizae inoculants that contain mycorrhizal spores.
Another important factor in achieving optimal mycorrhizal colonies is not tilling the soil. When you till your soil, it breaks down the delicate hyphae in the soil and destroys the fungal network. This can take months to repair, and in many cases, the fungal population can be lost completely.
Keeping your soil free of chemical fertilizers and weed killers will also encourage the growth of mycorrhizae. Fungicides can be effective against certain pests, but they can also destroy the beneficial fungi in the soil.
Mycorrhizae also produce metabolites that help protect the plant from pests and diseases. These metabolites include antifungal, antibacterial, and antiparasitic compounds. They also help the plant avoid fungus damage caused by insect or rodent feeding.
The mycorrhizal symbiosis helps the plant resist drought, humidity, and other environmental stresses. It increases the ability of the plant to extract nutrients from the soil and water more efficiently.
In addition, mycorrhizal fungi provide a barrier against certain pathogens and prevents them from penetrating the root system of the plant and infecting the rest of the plant. This prevents disease, and it is also useful in controlling a variety of other pests.
Mycorrhizal fungi are naturally occurring fungi that form symbiotic associations with most plants. They form a network of hyphae on the outside (ectomychorrhizae) or inside the roots (endomycorrhizae). These structures enable the fungi to access a larger volume of soil, improve nutrient absorption, increase selective ion uptake, and resist pests.