Smart Phone App Assists in Pest Management

Smart Phone App Assists in Pest Management

Fruit growers can now fight insects and disease from the palms of their hands with technology developed at Clemson University.

Initially tailored for peach and strawberry growers in the Southeast, the MyIPM smartphone app series has been expanded through a collaboration with scientists from eastern land grand universities, including North Carolina State University and the University of Georgia.

Two new MyIPM apps now have information on dozens of insects and diseases that attack peaches, blueberries and strawberries (MyIPM-SED) as well as apples, pears, cherries, cranberries and blueberries (MyIPM-NED). The apps include tips on identifying and managing crop-threatening diseases with instructions for growers to manage disease resistance and submit pathogen samples for resistance profiling. The three MyIPM (Integrated Pest Management) apps are available at the Apple Store and Google Play.

Tobacco Disease Showing Up in Eastern NC Counties

In select tobacco fields, potassium deficiency has started to develop.  Potassium deficiency is characterized by burning of the leaf tips and margins on mid-stalk leaves.  This deficiency is most common on deep, sandy soils that have low nutrient holding capacity.  It is common to see potassium deficiency under extreme weather conditions since potassium must be in soil solution for adequate uptake.

Target spot is also beginning to show up in locations throughout Wayne County and Eastern North Carolina. But, it’s important to not confuse target spot with weather fleck, the primary difference being that target spot will have concentric rings, and weather fleck does not.  For more recommendations, and visuals for these two issues, visit SFNToday dot com.

Farmers Overcame Huge Obstacles to Boost Output in WWII

Anne Effland, USDA history expert, explains that farmers during World War II were tasked with producing more, but had to overcome labor and equipment problems to do it.

“There was no way of keeping all the ‘farm boys’ on the farm to work, so there were efforts to mobilize, women, rural women, and bringing women from urban areas, to mobilize high school boys and girls to work on the farms.  We had much increased programs for bringing guest workers from Mexico, in particular, but also from the Caribbean.  So, we were able to manage enough labor, plus careful use of machinery, and careful choices of production, to provide for all these food needs around the world.”

Long Fight Ahead on EPA Atrazine Proposal

The Environmental Protection Agency draft risk assessment on atrazine says the herbicide is harmful to animals and plants, despite decades of research suggesting otherwise. Agriculture groups responded to the draft last week, saying the EPA risk assessment is based on misguided science. A final ruling could lead to a de facto ban on the use of atrazine by U.S. corn, sorghum and sugarcane growers, but that decision is likely years away.


A native of the Texas Panhandle, Rhonda was born and raised on a cotton farm where she saw cotton farming evolve from ditch irrigation to center pivot irrigation and harvest trailers to modules. After graduating from Texas Tech University, she got her start in radio with KGNC News Talk 710 in Amarillo, Texas.