Insect Control

NOTES:  For the insecticides listed below, one product trade name and formulation is provided for each active ingredient (AI) as an example of rates, preharvest interval (PHI), restricted entry interval (REI), and special instructions. In many cases, there are other products available with the same AI. Please see Table 26 and Insecticides Alphabetical Listing by Trade Name for more information on these insecticides.

The designation (Bee: L, M, or H) indicates a bee toxicity rating of low, moderate, or high. See the Protecting Honeybees and Native Pollinators section for more details.

The symbol * indicates a product is a restricted use pesticide. See Pesticide Safety and Use for more details.

The symbol OG   indicates a product is listed by the Organic Materials Review Institute (OMRI) as approved for use in organic production. See Organic Certification section for more details.

Aphids, Potato (Macrosiphum euphorbiae), Green Peach (Myzus persicae) and others 

Green peach aphids (GPA) and potato aphids (PA) are the most common colonizing aphids in potato, while buckthorn (Aphis nasturtii) and melon aphid (Aphis gossypii) and foxglove aphid (Aulacorthum solani) are occasional or localized pests. There are other species of aphids that do not colonize potatoes but may transmit virus as they probe potatoes in search of a host plant. 

Aphids vector Potato leafroll virus (PLRV) in a persistent manner and Potato Virus Y (PVY) in a non-persistent manner. PLRV and some strains of PVY are capable of causing internal discoloration of tubers, and some strains of PVY can cause both internal and external defects on tubers of some varieties.  Viruses reduce yield and quality in both seed and tablestock potatoes, and tolerance for virus is especially low in seed potato.  GPA is the primary vector of PLRV and an efficient vector of PVY.  Potato, buckthorn and many non-colonizing aphids are also vectors of PVY.  Buckthorn aphids are the smallest of potato-infesting aphids and are more common in northern Maine, where high populations can occur quite early in the season. See green peach aphid in the insect control section of Pepper and melon aphid in the insect control section of Cucumber for more information on these pests.

Potato aphid (PA) is the largest of the colonizing aphids, 3 to 4 mm long, elongated in shape, and may be pink or green. Its antennae are as long as the body, its cornicles are long with dark tips, and on the head between the antennae the tubercles turn outward.  When disturbed, PA may drop off the plant.  There are both winged and wingless forms of adult females who produce live nymphs without mating, about 50 nymphs per 2 weeks. Nymphs are yellowish green or yellowish pink and become reproductive in 2 weeks.  PA overwinters as eggs on plants in the rose family, feeds for several generations after hatching in spring, and colonizes a wide range of weeds, field crops, flowers, and vegetables from June through September. Vegetable crops most affected are potato, field and greenhouse tomato, lettuce, and spinach. PA feeds and builds up on young and growing plants, moving to new hosts as food quality declines. In fall they return to rose, male and female forms mate and eggs are laid. As far north as Virginia, overwintering occurs on crops such as kale and spinach, without an egg stage; in New England, winter greens in tunnels may provide a suitable habitat bridge for PA from one season to the next.

Potato aphids feed first in young growing tips, spreading downward as they multiply.  (By contrast, GPA feeds in lower leaves). Leaves become distorted, with the leaf edges curling downward, and dieback occurs from the tip downward.  Potato plants may be killed at high numbers. Tomatoes show similar leaf symptoms, but blossoms are preferred, and PA colonies cause blossom drop and fruit deformities. See aphids in the insect control section of Greenhouse Tomato for more on biocontrol of PA.

Use disease-free certified seed to reduce the incidence of virus. Plant varieties that are less susceptible to viruses (See Varieties). As with other aphids, naturally occurring predators and parasitoids suppress aphid populations in the field. Use selective or systemic insecticides for Colorado potato beetle to conserve natural enemies of aphids. Spread of PLRV can be prevented when effective foliar sprays are used at threshold. However, insecticides (both systemic and foliar) offer little or no protection against PVY.  Oil sprays have been shown to provide some protection from the virus transmission of non-persistent viruses, but must be reapplied regularly.

Fields should be scouted for aphids starting at 50% plant emergence in seed-producing areas, and starting in June where only fresh market or processing crops are grown. To scout, count all aphids on 25 to 50 fully expanded compound leaves (e.g., 5 per site, 10 sites across the field).  The threshold for insecticide application depends on growth stage and the target market. Thresholds in fresh market and processing potato: before tuber initiation, average 2 aphids/leaf; tuber initiation to 2 weeks before vine kill, average 4 aphids per leaf; and within two weeks of vine kill, average 10 aphids per leaf. Because of the importance of seed production in Maine, the economic threshold for all types of potatoes is lower: when aphids are found on 50% of the plants or 1 winged green peach aphid is found within the field. Because aphids tend to infest the underside of leaves, good spray coverage is needed for foliar sprays.

acetamiprid (Assail 30SG): 2.5 to 4 oz/A; PHI 7d, REI 12h, Bee: M, Group 4A.

alpha-cypermethrin (Fastac* EC): 3.2 to 3.8 oz/A; PHI 1d, REI 12h, Bee: H, Group 3A.

azadirachtin (Azatin OOG): 4 to 16 oz/A foliar or drench, 4 to 16 oz/100 gal in greenhouses; PHI 0d, REI 4h, Bee: L, Group un. When using lower rates, combine with adjuvant for improved spray coverage and translaminar uptake.

chlorantraniliprole & lambda-cyhalothrin (Besiege*): 6 to 9 oz/A; PHI 14d, REI 24h, Bee: H, Groups 28 & 3A.

Chromobacterium subtsugae strain PRAA4-1 (GrandevoOG): 2 to 3 lb/A; PHI 0d, REI 4h, Bee: M.

clothianidin (Belay): 2 to 3 oz/A for foliar application, 9 to 12 oz/A for soil application, 0.4 to 0.6 oz/100 lbs seed for seed-piece application; PHI 14d, REI 12h, Bee: H, Group 4A. Soil application may be at planting or as a side-dress at ground-crack during hilling (cover with at least 3" of soil).

cyantraniliprole (Verimark): 13.5 oz/A; PHI 0d, REI 4h, Bee: H, Group 28. For soil applications at planting. For suppression of green peach aphid only.

dimethoate (Dimethoate 4EC): 0.5 to 1 pt/A; PHI 0d, REI 48h, Bee: H, Group 1B.

dinotefuran (Venom): 0.3 lb/A foliar or 1.4 to 1.65 lbs/A soil; PHI 7d foliar, REI 12h, Bee: H, Group 4A. Soil application may be applied as a narrow band before planting, in-furrow at planting, or as a sidedress at ground-crack during hilling and immediately covered with soil. For green peach and potato aphid only.

esfenvalerate (Asana* XL): 5.8 to 9.6 oz/A; PHI 7d, REI 12h, Bee: H, Group 3A. For buckthorn and potato aphids.

flonicamid (Beleaf 50SG): 2 to 2.8 oz/A; PHI 7d, REI 12, Bee: L, Group 9C.

flupyradifurone (Sivanto): 7 to 10.5 oz/A; PHI 7d, REI 4h, Bee:L, Group 4D.

gamma-cyhalothrin (Declare*): 1.02 to 1.54 oz/A; PHI 7d, REI 24h, Bee: H, Group 3A.

imidacloprid (Admire Pro): 1.2 oz/A for foliar application, 4.4 to 10.5 oz/A for soil application; PHI 7d foliar, PHI 125d soil, REI 12h, Bee: H, Group 4A.

imidacloprid + mancozeb (TOPS-MZ-Gaucho): 0.75 lb/100 lb seed-pieces; REI 24h, Bee: H, Group 4A. Seed-piece treatment only. Do not make subsequent application of another neonicotinoid (Group 4A) insecticide following a seed-piece treatment. Aids in control of aphids. Not registered in CT or VT.

insecticidal soap (M-PedeOG): 1.25 to 2.5 oz/gal water; PHI 0d, REI 12h, Bee: L. Spray to wet all infested plant surfaces. May need to make repeated applications. For enhanced and residual control, apply with companion labeled aphicide.

lambda-cyhalothrin (Warrior* II): 1.28 to 1.92 oz/A; PHI 7d, REI 24h, Bee: H, Group 3A.

malathion (Malathion 57EC): 1 to 1.5 pt/A; PHI 0d, REI 12h, Bee: H, Group 1B.

methomyl (Lannate* LV): 1.5 to 3 pt/A; PHI 6d, REI 48h, Bee: H, Group 1A.

oxamyl (Vydate* C-LV): 17 to 34 oz/A; PHI 7d, REI 48h, Bee: H, Group 1A. At-planting treatments of systemic aphicides followed by mid-season Vydate application, before previous treatment starts to break down, has provided best season-long control. Note: Vydate L is NOT labeled for potatoes.

petroleum oil (Suffoil XOG): 1 to 2 gal/100 gal water; PHI 0d, REI 4h, Bee: L. Apply as needed.

phorate (Thimet* 20G): 8.5 to 11.3 oz/1000 row ft for light or sandy soils, 13 to 17.3 oz/1000 row ft in heavy or clay soils; PHI 90d, REI 48h, Bee: H, Group 1B. May be applied at planting in sandy or clay soils; distribute granules in furrow or band on each side of the row and incorporate. May be applied post-emergence on sandy soils only; place granules on each side of hill at seed-piece level before hilling, 4 to 6 weeks after planting.

pymetrozine (Fulfill): 2.75 to 5.5 oz/A; PHI 14d, REI 12h, Bee: L, Group 9A. Selective control of aphids including potato, melon and green peach. Translaminar. Apply at threshold, before populations build up. The "sticker" in some fungicides may inhibit leaf uptake. Consult label for mixing partners.

pyrethrin (PyGanic EC5.0OG): 4.5 to 17 oz/A; 0.25 to 0.50 oz/gal, 3 gal/1000 sq ft in greenhouse for backpack sprayers; PHI 0d, REI 12h, Bee: M, Group 3A.

sodium tetraborohydrate decahydrate (Prev-AM): 100 oz/100 gal; REI 12h, Bee: L, Group 25. Do not apply in midday sun or mix with copper, sulfur or oils.

spirotetramat (Movento): 4 to 5 oz/A; PHI 7d, REI 24h, Bee: M, Group 23. Must be tank-mixed with a spray adjuvant with spreading and penetrating properties to maximize leaf uptake and sytemicity; don't use sticker adjuvants. Controls immature stages; may also reduce adult fertility.

sulfoxaflor (Transform WG): 0.75 to 1.5 oz/A; PHI 7d, REI 24h, Bees: H, Group 4C. Do not apply until after petal fall.

thiamethoxam (Actara): 3 oz/A; PHI 14d, REI 12h, Bee: H, Group 4A.

thiamethoxam (Cruiser 5FS): 0.11 to 0.16 oz/100 lb of seed; REI 12h, Bee: H, Group 4A. Systemic seed treatment. Use only approved equipment for applying liquid seed treatment products to potatoes. See rates based on row spacing on label. For early-season protection.

thiamethoxam (Platinum): 5 to 8 oz/A; REI 12h, Bee: H, Group 4A. Systemic insecticide applied to seed pieces in-furrow during planting, impregnated on dry granular fertilizer before or during planting, or as directed spray at plant emergence or during last hilling operation. Must incorporate into root zone with sufficient irrigation within 24 hours. DO NOT apply as a foliar spray.

Colorado Potato Beetle (Leptinotarsa decemlineata)

Colorado potato beetles (CPB) are 1/2" long by 3/8" wide, oval with a rounded back, and each forewing is yellow with five black stripes. CPB overwinters in the adult stage, primarily in soil (up to 12" deep) in the woods and brushy borders next to host crops, though some burrow into soil in the field. In spring, the beetles search for food plants by walking from the field edges. Heavy feeding may occur on edges on non-rotated fields. If beetles do not find host plants via walking they will fly in search of food.

In the Northeast, CPB survives on solanaceous crops and weeds, including horsenettle, nightshade, eggplant, potato and tomato (primarily seedlings). Once host plants are found adults feed, mate and lay clumps of 30 to 35 bright yellow eggs on the undersides of leaves. Eggs hatch in 7 to 10 days, depending on temperature. The larva is hump-backed, rusty-red with 2 rows of black dots along each side of its body. Feeding damage and larvae are easily seen on leaves. Larvae grow through 4 stages and reach 5/8" long before they drop to the soil and pupate. Because the last stage does 85% of the feeding damage it is critical to control larvae while they are small. Adults emerge from pupae after 10 to 14 days. In southern New England, there is a second generation of eggs, larvae and adults, while in northern New England there is one generation.

Cultural controls. The single most important tactic for CPB management is to rotate potatoes, eggplant and tomato to a field that is at least 200 yards from the previous year's fields. Barriers such as roads, rivers, woodlands, and fields with other crops are helpful. This single practice delays colonization and reduces population densities.

Mechanical barriers such as trench traps, trap crops and straw mulch also delay and reduce infestation. Install plastic-lined trench traps next to overwintering sites at least 1 week before adults emerge. Trenches should be 1' to 2' deep and 6" to 24" wide at the top. They can be U- or V-shaped with side walls sloping at angles between 65° and 90°. Beetles walking from field borders fall into the trench and cannot fly out. Perimeter trap crops may be potatoes planted earlier than the main crop to attract beetles before the main crop emerges, or planted between overwintering sites and this season's crop. Flame, vacuum or spray border crop before beetles move into the main crop. Another approach is to plant 3 to 5 rows of potatoes treated with a systemic insecticide in a perimeter around the field; this treated border will kill up to 80% of the colonizing beetles. Straw mulch around the host crop has been shown to reduce beetle numbers. Late planting may cause beetles to leave the field before potatoes emerge, resulting in lower beetle numbers.

Natural enemies that attack CPB eggs or larvae include twelve-spotted ladybeetle, spined soldier bug, a carabid beetle, Lebia grandis and a parasitic tachinid fly. Beauvaria bassiana has been shown to suppress beetle populations though it does not provide immediate control.

Colorado potato beetles rapidly develop resistance to insecticides. This can happen in as short a time as 1 year and is likely whenever a single class of insecticide is used multiple times against the same population in the same and succeeding years. The population on a single farm may develop resistance in response to management practices on that farm. Resistance to pyrethroids and neonicotinoids exists in parts of New England.

Wherever possible, growers should rotate classes of insecticides and avoid using the same chemistry more than once per year, or better, once every other year. Do not use the same chemical class on successive generations in the same year. There are enough different classes to allow this, if you plan carefully. Note the resistance group number of each insecticide and avoid using chemistries from the same group. Use newer chemistries first.

Do not try to kill every beetle in the field. Potato crops can withstand 15% defoliation without affecting yields. Avoid spraying the beetle in late season, as food reserves in the foliage 2 weeks prior to senescence add little to final tuber bulking.

Scout to determine whether or not a damaging population is present. When using products that control only larvae, scout for eggs, note egg hatch and apply controls before larvae reach third instar. For materials that control all stages, you may wait and scout for adults and larvae to determine the need to apply insecticides.

To use the threshold table below, walk the field in a V-shaped pattern and select 50 potato stalks at intervals, e.g., every 10 to 20 paces, depending on field size. Count adults, large larvae (greater than half-grown) and small larvae (less than half-grown) separately. If the number of CPB is high, an insecticide should be applied; if the number is low, no insecticide is required for that week. If the number of CPB is between high and low, no insecticide should be applied, but the field should be checked in 3 to 5 days. Otherwise, the field should be checked weekly. These thresholds are for mid-season. Late in the season, potato plants can tolerate more defoliation without affecting yields.

Action Thresholds

Life Stage No. of CPB per 50 stalks
  Low High
Adults 15 or fewer 25 or more
Small Larvae 75 or fewer 200 or more
Large larvae 30 or fewer 75 or more

abamectin (Agri-Mek* SC): 1.75 to 3.5 oz/A; PHI 14d, REI 12h, Bee: H, Group 6. Must be mixed with a non-ionic wetting, spreading and/or penetrating spray adjuvant; do not use binder or sticker type adjuvant. Make first application at 50% egg hatch. If 2 applications are needed, limit to single application per CPB generation.

acetamiprid (Assail 30SG): 1.5 to 4 oz/A; PHI 7d, REI 12h, Bee: M, Group 4A.

alpha-cypermethrin (Fastac* EC): 3.2 to 3.8 oz/A; PHI 1d, REI 12h, Bee: H, Group 3A.

azadirachtin (Azatin OOG): 4 to 16 oz/A foliar or drench, 4 to 16 oz/100 gal in greenhouses; PHI 0d, REI 4h, Bee: L, Group un. For use on young larvae. When using lower rates, combine with adjuvant for improved spray coverage and translaminar uptake.

azadirachtin & pyrethrins (AzeraOG): 16 to 56 oz/A foliar, drench, and greenhouse applications; PHI 0d, REI 12h, Bee: M, Groups un & 3A.

Bacillus thuringiensis subsp. tenebrionis strain SA-10 (TridentOG): 3 to 6 qt/A; PHI 0d, REI 4h, Bees: M, Group 11. Only use 3 qt/A rate when light populations of larvae of uniform age or size are present. Use of an adjuvant may improve efficacy, but avoid mixing with silicone-based surfactants. Do not apply while pollinators are actively visiting the treatment area.

Beauveria bassiana (Mycotrol ESO): 0.5 to 1 qt/A; PHI 0d, REI 4h, Bee: L, Group 22. Treat when populations are low and thoroughly cover foliage. Takes 7 to 10 days after the first spray to see control. Repeat applications may be needed.

beta-cyfluthrin (Baythroid* XL): 1.6 to 2.8 oz/A; PHI 0d, REI 12h, Bee: H, Group 3A.

chlorantraniliprole (Coragen): 3.5 to 7.5 oz/A; PHI 14d, REI 4h, Bee: L, Group 28. Apply as a foliar spray. Do not apply more than twice to one generation or within a 30 day period. 

chlorantraniliprole & lambda-cyhalothrin (Besiege*): 6 to 9 oz/A; PHI 14d, REI 24h, Bee: H, Groups 28 & 3A.

clothianidin (Belay): 2 to 3 oz/A for foliar application, 9 to 12 oz/A for soil application, 0.4 to 0.6 oz/100 lbs seed for seed-piece application; PHI 14d, REI 12h, Bee: H, Group 4A. Soil application may be at planting or as a side-dress at ground-crack during hilling (cover with at least 3" of soil).

cyantraniliprole (Verimark): 6.75 to 13.5 oz/A for soil applications, 0.46 to 0.75 oz/100lb of seed pieces; PHI 0d, REI 4h, Bee: H, Group 28. For soil applications at planting and potato seed piece treatment.

cyromazine (Trigard): 2.66 to 5.32 oz/A; PHI 7d, REI 12h, Bee: M, Group, 17. Insect growth regulator most effective on small larvae. Does not control adult beetles.

deltamethrin (Delta Gold*): 1.5 to 2.4 oz/A; PHI 3d, REI 12h, Bee: H, Group 3A.

dinotefuran (Venom): 0.3 lb/A foliar or 1.4 to 1.65 lbs/A soil; PHI 7d foliar, REI 12h, Bee: H, Group 4A. Soil application may be applied as a narrow band before planting, in-furrow at planting, or as a sidedress at ground-crack during hilling and immediately covered with soil.

esfenvalerate (Asana* XL): 5.8 to 9.6 oz/A; PHI 7d, REI 12h, Bee: H, Group 3A.

flupyradifurone (Sivanto): 10.5 to 14 oz/A; PHI 7d, REI 4h, Bee: L, Group 4D.

gamma-cyhalothrin (Declare*): 1.02 to 1.54 oz/A; PHI 7d, REI 24h, Bee: H, Group 3A.

imidacloprid + mancozeb (TOPS-MZ-Gaucho): 0.75 lb/100 lb seed-pieces; REI 24h, Bee: H, Group 4A. Seed-piece treatment only. Do not make subsequent application of another neonicotinoid (Group 4A) insecticide following a seed-piece treatment. Aids in control of aphids. Not registered in CT or VT.

indoxacarb (Avaunt): 3.5 to 6 oz/A; PHI 7d, REI 12h, Bee: H, Group 22. Efficacy may be improved by the addition of piperonyl butoxide (PBO).

lambda-cyhalothrin (Warrior* II): 1.28 to 1.92 oz/A; PHI 7d, REI 24h, Bee: H, Group 3A.

novaluron (Rimon 0.83EC): 6 to 12 oz/A; PHI 14d, REI 12h, Bee: L, Group 16B. Do not apply to successive generations. Most effective on 1st and 2nd instars. No activity against adult CPB or beneficials.

oxamyl (Vydate* C-LV): 8.5 to 34 oz/A; PHI 7d, REI 48h, Bee: H, Group 1A. NOTE: Vydate L is NOT labeled for potatoes.

permethrin (Pounce* 25WP): 6.4 to 12.8 oz/A; PHI 14d, REI 12h, Bee: H, Group 3A.

phorate (Thimet* 20G): 13 to 17.3 oz/1000 row ft for heavy or clay soils in early season at-planting applications; 8.5 to 11.3 oz/1000 row ft for light or sandy soils in early season post-emergence applications; PHI 90d, REI 48h, Bee: H, Group 1B. Apply at planting in heavy soil; distribute granules in furrow or band on each side of the row and incorporate. Apply post-emergence on sandy soil; place granules on each side of hill at seed-piece level before hilling, 4 to 6 weeks after planting.

pyrethrin (PyGanic EC5.0OG): 4.5 to 17 oz/A; 0.25 to 0.50 oz/gal, 3 gal/1000 sq ft in greenhouse for backpack sprayers; PHI 0d, REI 12h, Bee: M, Group 3A.

spinetoram (Radiant SC): 4.5 to 8 oz/A; PHI 1d, REI 4h, Bee: M, Group 5.

spinosad (Entrust SCOG): 3 to 10 oz/A; PHI 7d, REI 4h, Bee: M, Group 5. Controls adult and larvae.

thiamethoxam (Actara): 1.5 to 3 oz/A; PHI 14d, REI 12h, Bee: H, Group 4A.

thiamethoxam (Cruiser 5FS): 0.11 to 0.16 fl. oz/100 lbs of seed; REI 12h, Bee: H, Group 4A. See rates based on row spacing on label. Systemic seed treatment. Use only approved equipment for applying liquid seed treatment products to potatoes. For early-season protection.

thiamethoxam (Platinum): 5 to 8 oz/A; REI 12h, Bee: H, Group 4A. Systemic insecticide applied to seed pieces in-furrow during planting, impregnated on dry granular fertilizer before or during planting, or as directed spray at plant emergence or during last hilling operation. Must incorporate into root zone with sufficient irrigation within 24 hours. DO NOT apply as a foliar spray.

zeta-cypermethrin (Mustang*): 3.4 to 4.3 oz/A; PHI 1d, REI 12h, Bee: H, Group 3A.  

Cutworms

Caterpillars hide under the soil surface adjacent to the plant stem during the day and feed after dark. Larvae may feed on leaves, cut stems or even occasionally feed on tubers. For best results, make application between midnight and dawn while cutworms are feeding aboveground. Synthetic pyrethroids (Group 3A) may work best during cool spring weather. See cutworms in the Pepper and Tomato (Outdoor) sections for more information on the black and variegated cutworms.

alpha-cypermethrin (Fastac* EC): 1.3 to 3.8 oz/A; PHI 1d, REI 12h, Bee: H, Group 3A.

Bacillus thuringiensis aizawai (XenTariOG): 0.5 to 1.5 lb/A; PHI 0d, REI 4h, Bee: L, Group 11. Must be ingested; apply in evening before larvae are actively feeding. Adherence and weather-fastness will improve with use of an approved spreader-sticker. Use high rate at cool temperatures.

Bacillus thuringiensis kurstaki (Dipel DFOG): 0.5 to 1 lb/A; PHI 0d, REI 4h, Bee: L, Group 11. Must be ingested; apply in evening before larvae are actively feeding. Adherence and weather-fastness will improve with use of an approved spreader-sticker. Use high rate at cool temperatures.

beta-cyfluthrin (Baythroid* XL): 0.8 to 1.6 oz/A; PHI 0d, REI 12h, Bee: H, Group 3A.

carbaryl (10% Sevin Granules): 20 lb/A; PHI 7d, REI 12h, Bee: H, Group 1A. Apply evenly over soil surface.

chlorantraniliprole & lambda-cyhalothrin (Besiege*): 5 to 8 oz/A; PHI 14d, REI 24h, Bee: H, Groups 28 & 3A.

deltamethrin (Delta Gold*): 1 to 2.4 oz/A; PHI 3d, REI 12h, Bee: H, Group 3A.

gamma-cyhalothrin (Declare*): 0.77 to 1.28 oz/A; PHI 7d, REI 24h, Bee: H, Group 3A.

esfenvalerate (Asana* XL): 5.8 to 9.6 oz/A; PHI 7d, REI 12h, Bee: H, Group 3A.

lambda-cyhalothrin (Warrior* II): 0.96 to 1.6 oz/A; PHI 7d, REI 24h, Bee: H, Group 3A.

methomyl (Lannate* LV): 1.5 pt/A; PHI 6d, REI 48h, Bee: H, Group 1A. Variegated cutworm only.

permethrin (Pounce* 25WP): 6.4 to 12.8 oz/A; PHI 14d, REI 12h, Bee: H, Group 3A.

spinosad (SeduceOG): 20 to 44 lb/A or 0.5 to1 lb/1000 sq ft.; PHI 7d, REI 4h, Bee: M, Group 5. Spread bait on soil around plants.

zeta-cypermethrin (Mustang*): 1.4 to 4.3 oz/A; PHI 1d, REI 12h, Bee: H, Group 3A.  

European Corn Borer (Ostrinia nubilalis)

Larvae infest potato stems but rarely cause yield reductions; however, larval infestations can exacerbate drought stress. Higher levels of stem infestations have been associated with a higher incidence of blackleg. For more information on ECB, see the Sweet Corn section. 

acetamiprid (Assail 30SG): 2.5 to 4 oz/A; PHI 7d, REI 12h, Bee: M, Group 4A. For use as an ovicide only.

alpha-cypermethrin (Fastac* EC): 1.8 to 3.8 oz/A; PHI 1d, REI 12h, Bee: H, Group 3A.

azadirachtin & pyrethrins (AzeraOG): 16 to 56 oz/A foliar, drench, and greenhouse applications; PHI 0d, REI 12h, Bee: M, Groups un & 3A.

beta-cyfluthrin (Baythroid* XL): 1.6 to 2.8 oz/A; PHI 0d, REI 12h, Bee: H, Group 3A.

Burkholderia spp. strain A396 cells and spent fermentation media (Venerate XCOG): 1 to 8 qt/A; PHI 0d, REI 4h, Bee: M.

chlorantraniliprole (Coragen): 3.5 to 7.5 oz/A; PHI 14d, REI 4h, Bee: L, Group 28. Apply as a foliar spray.

chlorantraniliprole & lambda-cyhalothrin (Besiege*): 6 to 9 oz/A; PHI 14d, REI 24h, Bee: H, Groups 28 & 3A.

Chromobacterium subtsugae strain PRAA4-1 (GrandevoOG): 1 to 3 lb/A; PHI 0d, REI 4h, Bee: M.

cyantraniliprole (Verimark): 10 to 13.5 oz/A; PHI 0d, REI 4h, Bee: H, Group 28. For soil applications at planting.

deltamethrin (Delta Gold*): 1.5 to 2.4 oz/A; PHI 3d, REI 12h, Bee: H, Group 3A.

esfenvalerate (Asana* XL): 5.8 to 9.6 oz/A; PHI 7d, REI 12h, Bee: H, Group 3A.

gamma-cyhalothrin (Declare*): 1.02 to 1.54 oz/A; PHI 7d, REI 24h, Bee: H, Group 3A.

indoxacarb (Avaunt): 3.5 to 6 oz/A; PHI 7d, REI 12h, Bee: H, Group 22.

lambda-cyhalothrin (Warrior* II): 1.28 to 1.92  oz/A; PHI 7d, REI 24h, Bee: H, Group 3A.

novaluron (Rimon 0.83EC): 6 to 12 oz/A; PHI 14d, REI 12h, Bee: L, Group 16B.

permethrin (Pounce* 25WP): 6.4 to 12.8 oz/A; PHI 14d, REI 12h, Bee: H, Group 3A.

pyrethrin (PyGanic EC5.0OG): 4.5 to 17 oz/A; 0.25 to 0.50 oz/gal, 3 gal/1000 sq ft in greenhouse for backpack sprayers; PHI 0d, REI 12h, Bee: M, Group 3A.

spinetoram (Radiant SC): 6 to 8 oz/A; PHI 1d, REI 4h, Bee: M, Group 5.

spinosad (Entrust SCOG): 3 to 10 oz/A; PHI 7d, REI 4h, Bee: M, Group 5.

zeta-cypermethrin (Mustang*): 1.9 to 4.3 oz/A; PHI 1d, REI 12h, Bee: H, Group 3A.

Flea Beetles, Potato (Epitrix cucumeris) and Eggplant (E. fuscula)

Shiny black beetles less than 1/8" long. Adults spend the winter under plant residue along tree lines or in the field. In the early spring, they feed on solanaceous weeds until they move to potato or other solanaceous crops. Numerous tiny feeding shot holes can injure leaves and stunt young plants. Management practices include clean cultivation, crop rotation, delayed plantings, removing or avoiding spring weed hosts, use of row covers, and applying spot treatments targeting young potato plants along the field edges. Full-size plants rarely require treatment for flea beetles. Most insecticides registered to control CPB, including spinosad, will control FB. Sweep young plants 25 times and spot treat potatoes along field edges if 50 beetles are found in the sweep net.

acetamiprid (Assail 30SG): 1.5 to 2.5 oz/A; PHI 7d, REI 12h, Bee: M, Group 4A.

alpha-cypermethrin (Fastac* EC): 1.8 to 3.8 oz/A; PHI 1d, REI 12h, Bee: H, Group 3A.

azadirachtin & pyrethrins (AzeraOG): 16 to 56 oz/A foliar, drench, and greenhouse applications; PHI 0d, REI 12h, Bee: M, Groups un & 3A.

beta-cyfluthrin (Baythroid* XL): 1.6 to 2.8 oz/A; PHI 0d, REI 12h, Bee: H, Group 3A.

bifenthrin (Brigade* 2EC): 3.2 to 9.6 oz/A at cultivation or lay-by, 2.1 to 6.4 oz/A foliar; PHI 21d, REI 12h, Bee: H, Group 3A. Sweet potato and black flea beetles only. Apply as foliar spray to control adults only.

carbaryl (Sevin XLR Plus): 0.5 to 1 qt/A; PHI 7d, REI 12h, Bee: H, Group 1A.

chlorantraniliprole & lambda-cyhalothrin (Besiege*): 6 to 9 oz/A; PHI 14d, REI 24h, Bee: H, Groups 28 & 3A.

clothianidin (Belay): 2 to 3 oz/A for foliar application, 9 to 12 oz/A for soil application, 0.4 to 0.6 oz/100 lbs seed for seed-piece application; PHI 14d, REI 12h, Bee: H, Group 4A. Soil application may be at planting or as a side-dress at ground-crack during hilling (cover with at least 3" of soil).

cyantraniliprole (Verimark): 6.75 to 13.5 oz/A; PHI 0d, REI 4h, Bee: H, Group 28. For soil applications at planting. Suppression only.

deltamethrin (Delta Gold*): 1.5 to 2.4 oz/A; PHI 3d, REI 12h, Bee: H, Group 3A.

dinotefuran (Venom): 0.3 lb/A foliar or 1.4 to 1.65 lbs/A soil; PHI 7d foliar, REI 12h, Bee: H, Group 4A. Soil application may be applied as a narrow band before planting, in-furrow at planting, or as a sidedress at ground-crack during hilling and immediately covered with soil.

esfenvalerate (Asana* XL): 5.8 to 9.6 oz/A; PHI 7d, REI 12h, Bee: H, Group 3A. Apply when temperature is less than 80°F and when foliage is free from dew or other moisture.

gamma-cyhalothrin (Declare*): 1.02 to 1.54 oz/A; PHI 7d, REI 24h, Bee: H, Group 3A.

imidacloprid (Admire Pro): 1.2 oz/A for foliar application, 4.4 to 10.5 oz/A for soil application; PHI 7d foliar, PHI 125d soil, REI 12h, Bee: H, Group 4A.

imidacloprid + mancozeb (TOPS-MZ-Gaucho): 0.75 lb/100 lb seed-pieces; REI 24h, Bee: H, Group 4A. Seed-piece treatment only. Do not make subsequent application of another neonicotinoid (Group 4A) insecticide following a seed-piece treatment. Aids in control of aphids. Not registered in CT or VT.

kaolin (Surround WPOG): 25 to 50 lb/A or 0.25 to 0.5 lb/gal; PHI 0d, REI 4h, Bee: L. Suppression/repellence only. Generally compatible as a tank mix with other insecticides.

lambda-cyhalothrin (Warrior* II): 1.28 to 1.92  oz/A; PHI 7d, REI 24h, Bee: H, Group 3A.

methomyl (Lannate* LV): 1.5 pt/A; PHI 6d, REI 48h, Bee: H, Group 1A.

oxamyl (Vydate* C-LV): 17 to 34 oz/A; PHI 7d, REI 48h, Bee: H, Group 1A. NOTE: Vydate L is NOT labeled for potatoes.

permethrin (Pounce* 25WP): 6.4 to 12.8 oz/A; PHI 14d, REI 12h, Bee: H, Group 3A.

phorate (Thimet* 20G): 8.5 to 11.3 oz/1000 row ft for light or sandy soils, 13 to 17.3 oz/1000 row ft in heavy or clay soils; PHI 90d, REI 48h, Bee: H, Group 1B. May only be applied at planting in sandy or clay soils; distribute granules in furrow or band on each side of the row and incorporate. For control of larvae and reduction of adults.

pyrethrin (PyGanic EC5.0OG): 4.5 to 17 oz/A; 0.25 to 0.50 oz/gal, 3 gal/1000 sq ft in greenhouse for backpack sprayers; PHI 0d, REI 12h, Bee: M, Group 3A.

thiamethoxam (Actara): 1.5 to 3 oz/A; PHI 14d, REI 12h, Bee: H, Group 4.

thiamethoxam (Cruiser 5FS): 0.11 to 0.16 fl. oz/100 lbs of seed; REI 12h, Bee: H, Group 4A. See rates based on row spacing on label. Systemic seed treatment. Use only approved equipment for applying liquid seed treatment products to potatoes. For early-season protection.

thiamethoxam (Platinum): 5 to 8 oz/A; REI 12h, Bee: H, Group 4. Systemic insecticide applied to seed pieces in-furrow during planting, impregnated on dry granular fertilizer, or as directed spray at plant emergence or during last hilling operation. Must incorporate into root zone with sufficient irrigation within 24 hours. DO NOT apply as a foliar spray.

zeta-cypermethrin (Mustang*): 1.9 to 4.3 oz/A; PHI 1d, REI 12h, Bee: H, Group 3A.  

Potato Leafhopper (Empoasca fabae)

Potato leafhoppers overwinter in Louisiana and vicinity and move north on storm fronts into the central states and then into New England on winds from the west. Low levels of leafhopper feeding can severely damage plants and cause symptoms known as hopper burn. Leaves yellow, turn brown and die. Adults are light green, 1/8" long, and wedge-shaped, while nymphs are bright green, flatter and fatter than adults, and move sideways in a crab-like fashion. Sample with sweep net, or shake plants to see if adults fly up, and treat if more than 1 adult per sweep is found. Nymphs can be monitored by visually inspecting lower leaf surfaces on lower leaves. Treat if more than 15 nymphs are found per 50 leaves.

acetamiprid (Assail 30SG): 1.5 to 4 oz/A; PHI 7d, REI 12h, Bee: M, Group 4A.

alpha-cypermethrin (Fastac* EC): 1.8 to 3.8 oz/A; PHI 1d, REI 12h, Bee: H, Group 3A.

azadirachtin (Azatin OOG): 4 to 16 oz/A foliar or drench, 4 to 16 oz/100 gal in greenhouses; PHI 0d, REI 4h, Bee: L, Group un. When using lower rates, combine with adjuvant for improved spray coverage and translaminar uptake. For suppression of nymphs only.

azadirachtin & pyrethrins (AzeraOG): 16 to 56 oz/A foliar, drench, and greenhouse applications; PHI 0d, REI 12h, Bee: M, Groups un & 3A.

beta-cyfluthrin (Baythroid* XL): 0.8 to 1.6 oz/A; PHI 0d, REI 12h, Bee: H, Group 3A.

carbaryl (Sevin XLR Plus): 0.5 to 1 qt/A; PHI 7d, REI 12h, Bee: H, Group 1A.

clothianidin (Belay): 2 to 3 oz/A for foliar application, 9 to 12 oz/A for soil application, 0.4 to 0.6 oz/100 lbs seed for seed-piece application; PHI 14d, REI 12h, Bee: H, Group 4A. Soil application may be at planting or as a side-dress at ground-crack during hilling (cover with at least 3" of soil).

chlorantraniliprole & lambda-cyhalothrin (Besiege*): 5 to 8 oz/A; PHI 14d, REI 24h, Bee: H, Groups 28 & 3A.

Chromobacterium subtsugae strain PRAA4-1 (GrandevoOG): 2 to 3 lb/A; PHI 0d, REI 4h, Bee: M.

deltamethrin (Delta Gold*): 1.5 to 2.4 oz/A; PHI 3d, REI 12h, Bee: H, Group 3A.

dimethoate (Dimethoate 4EC): 0.5 to 1 pt/A; PHI 0d, REI 48h, Bee: H, Group 1B.

dinotefuran (Venom): 0.3 lb/A foliar or 1.4 to 1.65 lbs/A soil; PHI 7d foliar, REI 12h, Bee: H, Group 4A. Soil application may be applied as a narrow band before planting, in-furrow at planting, or as a sidedress at ground-crack during hilling and immediately covered with soil.

esfenvalerate (Asana * XL): 2.9 to 9.6 oz/A; PHI 7d, REI 12h, Bee: H, Group 3A.

fenpyroximate (Portal XLO): 2 pt/A; PHI 7d, REI 12h, Bee: L, Group 21A.

flupyradifurone (Sivanto): 7 to 10.5 oz/A; PHI 7d, REI 4h, Bee: L, Group 4D.

gamma-cyhalothrin (Declare*): 0.77 to 1.28 oz/A; PHI 7d, REI 24h, Bee: H, Group 3A.

imidacloprid (Admire Pro): 1.2 oz/A for foliar application, 4.4 to 10.5 oz/A for soil application; PHI 7d foliar, PHI 125d soil, REI 12h, Bee: H, Group 4A.

imidacloprid + mancozeb (TOPS-MZ-Gaucho): 0.75 lb/100 lb seed-pieces; REI 24h, Bee: H, Group 4A. Seed-piece treatment only. Do not make subsequent application of another neonicotinoid (Group 4A) insecticide following a seed-piece treatment. Aids in control of aphids. Not registered in CT or VT.

insecticidal soap (M-PedeOG): 1.25 to 2.5 oz/gal water; PHI 0d, REI 12h, Bee: L. Spray to wet all infested plant surfaces. May need to make repeated applications. For enhanced and residual control, apply with companion labeled insecticide.

kaolin (Surround WPOG): 25 to 50 lb/A or 0.25 to 0.5 lb/gal; PHI 0d, REI 4h, Bee: L. Suppression/repellence only. Generally compatible as a tank mix with other insecticides.

lambda-cyhalothrin (Warrior* II): 0.96 to 1.6 oz/A; PHI 7d, REI 24h, Bee: H, Group 3A.

malathion (Malathion 57EC): 1 to 1.5 pt/A; PHI 0d, REI 12h, Bee: H, Group 1B.

methomyl (Lannate* LV): 1.5 to 3 pt/A; PHI 6d, REI 48h, Bee: H, Group 1A.

oxamyl (Vydate* C-LV): 17 to 34 oz/A; PHI 7d, REI 48h, Bee: H, Group 1A. NOTE: Vydate L is NOT labeled for potatoes.

paraffinic oil (Organic JMS Stylet-OilOG): 0.75 to 1.5 gal/100 gal water; PHI 0d, REI 4h, Bee: L.

permethrin (Pounce* 25WP): 6.4 to 12.8 oz/A; PHI 14d, REI 12h, Bee: H, Group 3A.

phorate (Thimet* 20G): 8.5 to 11.3 oz/1000 row ft for light or sandy soils, 13 to 17.3 oz/1000 row ft in heavy or clay soils; PHI 90d, REI 48h, Bee: H, Group 1B. May be applied at planting in sandy or clay soils; distribute granules in furrow or band on each side of the row and incorporate. May be applied post-emergence on sandy soils only; place granules on each side of hill at seed-piece level before hilling, 4 to 6 weeks after planting.

pyrethrin (PyGanic EC5.0OG): 4.5 to 17 oz/A; 0.25 to 0.50 oz/gal, 3 gal/1000 sq ft in greenhouse for backpack sprayers; PHI 0d, REI 12h, Bee: M, Group 3A.

sodium tetraborohydrate decahydrate (Prev-AM): 100 oz/100 gal; REI 12h, Bee: L, Group 25. Do not apply in midday sun or mix with copper, sulfur or oils.

sulfoxaflor (Transform WG): 1.5 to 2.25 oz/A; PHI 7d, REI 24h, Bees: H, Group 4C. Do not apply until after petal fall.

thiamethoxam (Actara): 1.5 to 3 oz/A; PHI 14d, REI 12h, Bee: H, Group 4.

thiamethoxam (Cruiser 5FS): 0.11 to 0.16 fl. oz/100 lbs of seed; REI 12h, Bee: H, Group 4A. See rates based on row spacing on label. Systemic seed treatment. Use only approved equipment for applying liquid seed treatment products to potatoes. For early-season protection.

thiamethoxam (Platinum): 5 to 8 oz/A; PHI 30d, REI 12h, Bee: H, Group 4. Systemic insecticide applied to seed pieces in-furrow during planting, impregnated on dry granular fertilizer, or as directed spray at plant emergence or during last hilling operation. Must incorporate into root zone with sufficient irrigation within 24 hours. DO NOT apply as a foliar spray.

zeta-cypermethrin (Mustang*): 3.4 to 4.3 oz/A; PHI 1d, REI 12h, Bee: H, Group 3A.

Wireworms, including corn wireworm (Melanotus communis)

Corn wireworm is reported to be the most common wireworm species in the Northeast, but others may also be present including the tobacco wireworm, (Conodoerus verspertinus). Corn wireworm causes damage to vegetable crops including cabbage, corn, lettuce, pepper, potato and sweet potato as well as field crops including field corn, sorghum, soybean, tobacco, and wheat. Wireworms are attracted to germinating seeds and can be a seed pest in large-seeded crops such as beans, peas and corn.

Wireworms are the underground larval stage of click beetles, which are elongated, brown beetles that snap their bodies to make a clicking sound. Adults emerge from the soil in May and June and tend to hide during the day and fly mostly at night.  Egg-laying females prefer grassy or weedy fields. Eggs are deposited in the soil, often in batches. Larvae are slender, yellow-brown, hard-shelled, and shiny, with 3 pairs of legs. Wireworms spend multiple years in the soil, and completing their development from egg to adult may take 2 to 5 years depending on conditions. They feed on other insects, roots, seeds, tubers, and other plant tissue. Wireworms prefer wet soils and moderate temperatures (at least 70º F); they migrate up to reach warmer soils, but down to avoid excessive cold, heat, or drought. In agricultural fields, where other plants are eliminated, the crop itself is the primary available food source. Wireworms may injure potatoes by feeding on the seed piece resulting in weak stands, but the majority of their damage is caused by tunneling into tubers which reduces yield quality. Wireworm tunnels also provide entry to tuber pathogens, increasing tuber rots.

Tuber damage may be worse under drought conditions, where the crop provides the only source of moisture in a dry field. Wireworms are more pronounced in soils that are wet, heavy or high in organic matter. They may be worse in low areas of the field; however, they will move away from saturated soils that lack oxygen. Wireworm problems occur most often in fields that were recently in hay, pasture or sod (within the past 3 years), had grassy weeds in previous years, or were in sorghum-sudangrass or grass cover crops, or cereal grains.  Forest soils may also harbor wireworms, thus recently cleared land can be infested. The most important method of wireworm control is to avoid planting potatoes or other susceptible crops in these fields.

Baits using corn or wheat or rolled oats placed 6" to 8" deep can be used to determine if wireworms are present, but these sampling methods are labor intensive, and potatoes are often planted in cold soils before such samples could be completed.  A review of many insecticide trials over 2 decades indicated that organophosphate insecticides applied as a preplant broadcast or in-furrow gave better control than carbamates, and that fipronil and bifrenthrin were as effective as the organophosphates, but with less environmental impact and potential human safety concerns.

bifenthrin (Brigade* 2EC): 9.6 to 19.2 oz/A at planting, for corn and tobacco wireworm only. 3.2 to 9.6 oz/A at cultivation or lay-by, 2.1 to 6.4 oz/A foliar, for southern potato wireworm only; PHI 21d, REI 12h, Bee: H, Group 3A. May be applied as soil-incorporated broadcast, bed, or t-band spray into planting furrow or soil-directed and incorporated spray at cultivation or lay-by for wireworms. May be applied as foliar spray for click beetle (adult wireworm).

ethoprop (Mocap* 15G): 1.4 lb/1000 row feet banded, 27 to 40 lb/A broadcast; REI 48h, Bee: H, Group 1B. Apply before potato emergence only. Direct contact with seed pieces may contribute to delayed emergence. Extremely toxic to birds; do not leave granules on soil surface.

fipronil* (Regent 4SC): 3.2 oz/A; PHI 90d, REI 0d, Bee: H, Group 2. Make one in-furrow treatment at planting. Must be thoroughly incorporated and covered with soil immediately after application. DO NOT use at T-band over the top of closed furrow.

imidacloprid + mancozeb (TOPS-MZ-Gaucho): 0.75 lb/100 lb seed-pieces; REI 24h, Bee: H, Group 4A. Seed-piece treatment only. Do not make subsequent application of another neonicotinoid (Group 4A) insecticide following a seed-piece treatment. Aids in control of aphids. Not registered in CT or VT. Suppression only.

Isaria fumosorosea Apopka Strain 97 (PFR-97 20% WDGOG): 1 to 2 lb/A soil drench; PHI 0d, REI 4h, Bee: M, Group M.

phorate (Thimet* 20G): 8.5 to 11.3 oz/1000 row ft for light or sandy soils, 13 to 17.3 oz/1000 row ft in heavy or clay soils; PHI 90d, REI 48h, Bee: H, Group 1B. May be applied at planting in sandy or clay soils; distribute granules in furrow or band on each side of the row and incorporate. May be applied post-emergence for suppression only on sandy soils only; place granules on each side of hill at seed-piece level before hilling, 4 to 6 weeks after planting.

thiamethoxam (Cruiser 5FS): 0.11 to 0.16 fl. oz/100 lbs of seed; REI 12h, Bee: H, Group 4A. See rates based on row spacing on label. Systemic seed treatment. Use only approved equipment for applying liquid seed treatment products to potatoes. For protection of seedpieces from wireworm.

thiamethoxam (Platinum): 5 to 8 oz/A; REI 12h, Bee: H, Group 4. Systemic insecticide applied to seed pieces in-furrow during planting, impregnated on dry granular fertilizer before or at planting, or as directed spray at plant emergence or during last hilling operation. Must incorporate into root zone with sufficient irrigation within 24 hours. DO NOT apply as a foliar spray. For seedpiece protection only.