ORGANIC TURF WORKSHOP – AUGUST 11, 2014,
On Monday, August 11th, “Systems Approach to Natural Turf Management” workshop is being offered free of charge to school staff who may be interested in learning about organic turf and it’s management.
The 3 hr. workshop will present an overview of the basic concepts and protocols of an organic turf program and will cover in detail the core practices that must be followed to achieve a healthy, organic turf. The premise of the course is that a healthy, naturally maintained turf is more resilient, more drought-tolerant and more resistant to pest infestations that chemically managed turf.
The workshop will present detailed information on how to measure, develop and maintain healthy soil biology, how to maintain proper fertilization levels for optimum growth and plant health, how cultural practices should be altered for organic turf, and how to address specific pest problems without chemical pesticides.
In addition to the morning workshop, the City of Boulder will be offering an afternoon tour of their athletic fields and park sites that have been managed without pesticides for over 12 years.
The workshop is being offered by the City of Boulder and Osborne Organics in collaboration with CSU Center for Integrated Pest Management.
You must RSVP by August 8th. To RSVP for the workshop, the tour or both, please contact Genevieve Berry at: firstname.lastname@example.org or call 970-491-6408.
START THE SCHOOL YEAR WITH IPM
The beginning of the school year is a great time to begin implementing IPM practices. Whether your school is just getting started with IPM or has been using IPM for awhile, there are some tried and true steps that always work.
Here is a list of IPM steps that you can do before the students arrive:
Schedule IPM training for your staff.
Inspect all doors leading outdoors and submit work orders for new or repaired door sweeps.
Remind teachers and support staff that keeping food stored in plastic containers can significantly reduce pest problems.
Let your school administrators know that IPM is an important component in keeping your school green and healthy.
Studies have shown that healthy environments contribute to better staff retention and student’s academic performance.
EARWIGS IN SCHOOLS
Earwigs can be nuisance pests when found indoors, often under rugs, potted plants or in stacks of newspapers. Outdoors, they may feed on leafy plants such as lettuce, seedlings, strawberries and some flower blossoms. Earwigs are beneficial because they feed on many plant pests such as aphids and insect eggs. The only earwig found throughout most of Colorado is the European earwig. It is an introduced species from Europe. The insect is about 5/8 inch long with a reddish head and is sometimes mistaken for a cockroach. A distinctive feature is the pair of prominent forceps at the rear of the body. Peak problems with earwigs in Colorado tend to occur from mid-July through mid-September.
Earwigs like to hide in dark, tight-fitting areas during the day and are active at night. Earwigs hibernate in the soil as adults during the winter. They seek refuge indoors when conditions outside are too dry, hot or cold. Although they will enter homes and schools to hide, they don’t breed inside. Earwigs are omnivores. Once inside a building, they will feed on crumbs of human food as well as pet food.
Managing earwigs with IPM
Prevent earwigs from moving into schools and other buildings by sealing cracks and crevices along foundations and using tight-fitting door sweeps.
Clear the area next to the building of sheltering debris (including mulches) used by earwigs, particularly near doorways and window wells. Remove ivy, weeds, piles of leaves, or rubbish that is close to the foundation.
Keep water and moisture away from the structure by repairing drain spouts, grading the area so water drains away, and ventilating crawl spaces to minimize moisture.
Use yellow or sodium vapor light bulbs, which are less attractive to these insects.
Place traps outdoors to reduce numbers. Traps can be of various designs but should produce dark hiding areas that the earwigs will seek out for daytime shelters. Rolled corrugated cardboard and rolled or crumpled newspapers can be very effective.
Vegetable oil or fish oil can be used as bait; place it in a small cup sunk into the ground. Keep the level of the oil at least an inch below the surface, forcing the earwigs to crawl deeply into the cup. Many earwigs may be attracted into oil-baited cups and drown. Traps should be collected every 2-3 days, bagged and the captured earwigs discarded.
Indoors, sweep or vacuum up earwigs.
Did you know?
The earwig received its name due to the myth the earwig would crawl into your ear if you slept on the ground.
There are over 1,700 species of earwigs in the world.
Their pincers are typically only used to capture prey, defend against predators, and help the earwig sense its surroundings.
Mother earwigs stay with their eggs and nymphs, sometimes until after their second molt.
Earwigs can live one to three years.
IPM & HEALTH INSPECTION TRAINING VIDEO NOW AVAILABLE!
The Northwest Center for Alternatives to Pesticides (NCAP) has released an online training video, called Integrated Pest Management and Health Inspections. The seven-minute YouTube video provides strategies to incorporate IPM into a school’s comprehensive environmental health program. The video showcases an on-site inspection of a school in Multanomah County, OR. Although the video focuses on Oregon school IPM regulations, much of the content is applicable nationally.
NCAP developed an accompanying online survey to gather feedback on content and training needs. Survey data will be used to improve future videos and guide training for IPM best practices. Please consider completing the survey after watching the video. The survey is available here.
Funding for the video was provided in part by the Western IPM Center. For more information contact Megan Dunn at email@example.com, Healthy People and Communities Program Director for NCAP.
HAVE A PLAN IN PLACE FOR BED BUGS
According to Dr. Dini Miller, urban pest management specialist for Virginia Cooperative Extension, the most important step a school can take in dealing with bed bugs (it’s not a question of whether you will find bed bugs in your school but when) is to have a plan in place before you find a bed bug! Each school district should develop a policy for when a bed bug is found. It is critical to decide how to respond to a single bed bug found . It is critical to decide how to respond to a single bed bug found on a child’s clothing versus how to respond to one or more bed bugs loose in a classroom. Communicate this policy to all faculty and staff. Recommendations can be found on our website (http://ipm.agsci.colostate.edu/school-ipm-resources/).
SNAILS, SNAILS, AND MORE SNAILS, observations by Whitney Cranshaw
The brown garden snail (Helix aspersa) is something I have always seen on occasion, invariably as single individuals. As it is a species that is common in some places, like much of the Pacific Sttes, and can easily hitchhike on plant material, I have assumed that they are regularly introduced into Colorado on nursery stock.
But they never seemed to establish well, which didn’t seem surprising as it is way more arid in Colorado than where these snails seem to thrive. I had never seen a large population in Colorado. Until the other day, when I saw not only my first large population but my second on the same day – one in Denver, the other in Fort Collins.
So, I am wondering if others see sites where there are large, well-reproducing populations of this snail in Colorado.
There is a sheet on this at: http://bspm.agsci.colostate.edu/files/2013/03/Brown-Garden-Snail.pdf
Contact us if your school district would like to schedule 1 hr. to 4 hr. workshops on implementing IPM.
August 11, 2014
Systems Approach to Natural Turf Management Workshop
August 24-27, 2014
Association of Structural Pest Control Regulatory Officials (ASPCRO) National Meeting
November 16-19, 2014
Entomological Society of America (ESA) National MeetingPortland, OR
March 24-26, 2015
8th international IPM Symposium
Salt Lake City, UT