What is a banker plant and what is IPM?

The crazy terminology of a greenhouse business. What do all these words mean? What is a banker plant and what is IPM?

IPM stands for Integrated Pest Management. Basically it’s a step by step plan on how a farm, nursery, or greenhouse will control pests on a crop (whether in a greenhouse or a field setting). We have four steps in our IPM program. We use a biological approach first (good insects to fight bad pests).

 

Our first banker plants arrived yesterday in the greenhouse (pictured above – infected with aphids). So what’s a banker plant? It’s a plant that we use to grow bad bugs on (specifically for our greenhouse, we use a cereal aphid)  so we can infect the aphids with a good insect (a special wasp called Aphidius colemani). Why do we do that? To increase the population of the good wasps. Then we place these banker plants throughout the greenhouse and have an effective biological control in place, ready to go to work!

 

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