Do you have a vegetable garden at your backyard? When you cropped it, have your potato or tomato on your bed found in unusual? They are unearthing disappointing on crops. Instead of digging up a plentiful bounty of spuds, you are finding your crops are stunted, with tiny tubers.
If some the symptoms occur on your crop, then maybe the doer is tomato/potato psyllid (Bactericera cockerelli), they are kind of pest that can cause the number and size of tubers to shrink, while in tomatoes they can cause the plant to produce small and poor-quality or even prevent fruit forming.
Recently, many tomato gardeners in New Zealand also disappointing because of miserable their, and it is possible that the pest called psyllid is the caused. MAF Biosecurity New Zealand says there is been so much interest among home gardeners in the damage caused by the psyllid that it has distributed a fact sheet about the pest to more than 300 garden centres nationwide.
The cause of psyllid in tomatoes can cause small and poor quality fruits even they can prevent fruit forming. In potatoes they cause almost a same symptom. They make the number and size of tubers smaller than the uninfected one. Harvested tubers often sprout prematurely, Plant and Food Research says, and after a while infected potato plants can look scorched and collapse prematurely. Beside tomato and potato, psyllid also can infected capsicums, tamarillo and cape gooseberry trees.
For many time, psyllid found in United States, northern Mexico and southern Canada, and now also found in New Zealand and has been found in both outdor and greenhouse crops. Psyllid live underside of the leaves. In adult form they are about the size of adult aphids and look like miniature cicadas. They feed like aphids and transmit a bacterial pathogen called Liberibacter which infect the plants. The female psyllid known can lay up to 510 eggs during their lifetime. The eggs are oval shape with orage to yellow color. They are attached to leaves by a stalk.
They remain nymps for between 12 and 21 days and then grow to two millimeters in length and begin to feeds on the underside of leaves. Adult psyllid are 3-4 millimeters in length with long and clear wings.
They cause the damage in plant by suck plant sap and infect the plant with bacterial pathogen. These stage possibly causing the leaves become discolored and the plant to become stunted, with upturned leaf edges yellowing or showing a purple color.
Check plant regularly from sign of eggs, nymphs and adult psyllid. Beware of unknown yellowing leaves.
Get separated infested plants from un-infested one and then destroyed the infested one. If you purchase plant from local nursery, make sure your plants are psyllid free.
In greenhouse or outdoor bed, hang yellow sticky traps close to the tops of the pant which infested by psyllid.
Avoid keeping any psyllid -infested plants in greenhouses over the winter
Let the psyllid predators like damsel bugs, bigeye bugs, minute pirate bugs or ladybird.
White and silver reflective ground coverings are reported to reduce psyllid infestations.
Use trusted and unharmed insecticides including organic insecticides to control the psyllid. Consult with your home garden center as to what may most effective for you.
When use pesticides, focused on backside of leaves.