Delaware IPM Report, 2020

NEERA meeting: May 12, 2020

IPM Team Members

  • Mark VanGessel – Extension Weed Science
  • Alyssa Koehler – Extension Plant Pathology
  • Brian Kunkel – Extension Entomology, Horticulture
  • Rose Ogutu – Horticulture Specialist, DSU
  • David Owens – Extension Entomology, Agriculture
  • Tracy Wootten – Horticulture Extension Agent
  • Carrie Murphy – Lawn and Garden Program Leader

General Comments and Current State

Delaware integrated pest management activity is focused on agronomic crops (corn, soybean, sorghum, wheat and barley), specialty crops (insect trapping network, cucurbit pest management) and community IPM. Funding is provided by the state, specialty crop block grants, commodity groups (Delaware and Maryland Soybean Board, Maryland Grain Producers Utilization Board, MarDel Watermelon Association, Pennsylvania Vegetable Marketing and Research Program) Federal E-IPM, Northeast Integrated Pest Management Center, USDA NIFA, Sustainable Agricultural Systems, USDA SARE.

2019 marked the first field season for Delaware’s new extension plant pathologist, Dr. Alyssa Koehler, and the second field season for Delaware’s extension entomologist, Dr. David Owens. One county agent position was vacated and refilled by Dr. Jake Jones (Kent County). A natural resources extension agent position was filled by Blake Moore. Blake is currently spearheading the creation of a statewide Master Naturalist program. The extension IPM agent position was vacated; duties have largely been assumed by a new entomology limited term researcher.

2019 Activities


  • Weekly Crop Update—UD’s weekly pest and crop advisory continues to be successful and reaches over 700 unique email addresses. Issues run regularly from April to September.

Delaware E-IPM EIP Extension Implementation Project

  • Field Crops
    • Herbicide resistance screening—ragweed, Italian ryegrass, henbit, palmer amaranth
    • Palmer amaranth management in soybean using narrow rows, harvest technology, cover cropping
    • Cereal leaf beetle degree day model
  • Forage
    • Pasture walks and demonstration of pasture scouting techniques
  • Urban—tree planting demonstration
  • Specialty
    • Weed management and resistance—“overlapping residual herbicides”—crop safety satisfactory when overlapping residuals. Continuing research before making recommendations.
    • Insect trapping network and CEW resistance, Bt sentinels, iPIPE—continuing to maintain insect trapping network, testing CEW resistance to pyrethroids and Bt traits in sweet corn in collaboration with UMD.
    • High tunnels, small fruit and vegetable pest management trials (DSU)—High tunnel pest management demonstrations with DSU.
  • Cover Crops
    • 5 demonstration sites with late termination of cover crop—weed control similar, termination very effective.
    • Cover crop species plots
    • Rye and crimson clover seeding rates

Monitoring weed emergence timing for common weed species in the NE (Collaborative project with Cornell)

Spring seeded cereal rye for weed suppression in watermelon


  • 2019 Beginning Farmer Training (11 sessions)
  • Master Gardener core and advanced training; Master gardener led trainings for general public
  • Herbicide Resistance workshops—5 in MD and DE
  • Integrated Pest Management Implementation Workshop (2; DSU)—focus on high tunnel and greenhouse pest management, weed management, cover cropping and urban pests.
  • Green roof insect pest management workshop
  • Delaware AgWeek
  • Mid-Atlantic Crop Management School

2019 New Projects Initiated

  • Cucurbit arthropod pest management research—seasonal pattern, resistance monitoring
  • Nematode and Disease survey of field crops across Maryland and Delaware
  • Merging cereal rye and herbicide: how can we reduce herbicide inputs
  • Organic weed control for soybeans: it starts before planting


Research Office administrative delays slowed the implementation of the DSU high tunnel pest management activities as outlined in the DE E-IPM project.