Long before the term “sustainable” became a household word, farmers were implementing sustainable practices in the form of Integrated Pest Management (IPM) strategies. IPM uses a combination of biological, cultural, physical, and chemical methods to reduce and/or manage pest populations. These strategies are used to minimize environmental risks, economic costs, and health hazards. Pests are managed (although rarely eliminated) to reduce their negative impact on the crop.

Scouting and monitoring diseases, insects, weeds, and abiotic disorders in order to identify potential problems before they result in serious losses is essential to the IPM approach. The key to effective monitoring is accurate identification. The pictures included in this guide represent the more common abiotic and biotic problems that occur on vegetable crops grown in high tunnel and greenhouse structures in Kentucky.

This manual is not all-inclusive, and growers may encounter problems not included here. Please contact a local Cooperative Extension Service office for assistance.

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