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Safj Sa Fruit Journal Sati Managing Thrips Featured
October / November 2023

Managing late season thrips

SA Fruit Journal: October / November 2023

Persistent problems with infestations of thrips close to harvest, in Mpumalanga and Limpopo. By Elleunorah Allsopp (ARC Infruitec-Nietvoorbij) and Michael Stiller (ARC-PHP Biosystematics)

Researchers at the ARC, funded by the ARC and SATI, investigated reports by table-grape growers in Mpumalanga and Limpopo of persistent problems with infestations of thrips close to harvest that cause feeding damage to secondary shoots and leaves.

Thrips were monitored over two seasons, with blue and yellow sticky traps in four vineyards adjacent to citrus orchards, and one vineyard with no citrus nearby in the Marble Hall and Groblersdal districts. Results over two seasons confirmed that flower specialists like western flower thrips and blossom or "kromnek" thrips (Frankliniella species) were the most abundant thrips during flowering.

No halo spot damage due to egg-laying, or corky scarring due to thrips feeding on very young berries were observed. Monitoring and early season sprays were effective in preventing damage by the flower specialist thrips.

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