An insidious guest from North America, the Colorado potato beetle is perhaps the main enemy of potato plantings in recent decades. The invasion of this pest can only be stopped by the total processing of potatoes with chemicals that do not always positively affect the human body and the environment. A much safer and more effective way to deal with the invasion of the striped coleoptera is to select resistant varieties of potatoes or process planting material shortly before planting.
This method has many advantages:
- less labor, because plantings after it do not need numerous sprayings;
- saving time and material resources, since the amount and cost of drugs spent on the treatment of tubers is much less than the means for spraying bushes;
- lack of harm, even potential, for beneficial insects and animals.
As can be seen from the above, saving the potato field from the Colorado potato beetle can be easily, inexpensively and safely, only the operation must be started long before the tubers are planted.
Pretreatment: how to conduct
Since the direct relationship between productivity and the presence of the Colorado potato beetle on potato fields has long been proven, there is no doubt that it is better to deal with this pest by the most effective methods. One of them is the preliminary processing of tubers.
The procedure is carried out shortly before planting potatoes. There are two processing methods:
- Spraying of planting material with a solution prepared in advance and their subsequent drying.
- Immersion of tubers in the bath with the prepared solution for a certain period (from several minutes to several hours) with their subsequent drying.
Whatever method the gardener uses, it is important to remember that almost all means for pre-processing seed potatoes are very toxic, including for humans. That is why it is recommended to use a mask (respirator), rubber gloves and tight clothing when dressing tubers. But what to use is not worth it - it's garden tools (buckets, scoops, etc.), which are planned to be used for harvesting.
Prestige: Potato Processing
How to "pickle" potatoes: chemicals
Chemical treatment of potatoes consists in impregnating the top layer of the tuber with specific substances, which later penetrate into its pulp and then into the germinating stems. Most of them are caustic compounds that repel pests by smell, or biological organisms (most often bacteria that are safe for humans and animals) that inhabit the plant and secrete special substances that repel the Colorado potato beetle.
In fact, there are plenty of tools that you can process potatoes before planting:
- Celest Top;
- Voliam Flexi;
Some of these tools (Celest Top and Cruiser) contain several components, and help to get rid of not only striped pests, but also from mushroom diseases of potatoes. The effectiveness of these funds is very high. According to studies by developers and consumer reviews, that is, summer residents, the Colorado potato beetle does not fly up to bushes treated with such insecticides for at least 4 months. Thus, plants manage to form a full-fledged land part and, as a result, large commodity tubers.
By these means it is also possible to process seeds intended for healing varietal potatoes or for breeding. An even greater effect occurs when spraying holes or furrows in which seeds and tubers will be laid.
Organics on the guard of potatoes: folk remedies for presowing treatment
Before the market for agricultural reagents was filled with preparations for processing potatoes from the Colorado potato beetle, summer residents fought with the pest at hand, that is, folk remedies: infusions of herbs, plant parts ground into powder. Until now, fans of organic farming use them on their site.
It is believed that the striped pest and its larvae do not tolerate harsh odors and bitter substances that are inherent in the following folk remedies:
- onion husk (it is laid in the planting holes and furrows along with potatoes or sprayed with concentrated broth from the tuber husk before planting);
- spring garlic (planted in holes with potatoes);
- peel of a walnut, surely green (tubers are sprayed with strong infusion before planting);
- ash birch and coal (it pollinates tubers and holes when planting potatoes, periodically dusting the soil as the growth of potato bushes).
The effectiveness of such tools has not been scientifically evaluated, but it is reliably known that they help only in cases where the population of plantings by the beetle and its larvae is medium or low.
Colorado beetle resistant varieties
Another effective way to save yourself the hassle of getting rid of the Colorado potato beetle is to plant potato varieties that are resistant to it. Unlike others, they have several features that the pest obviously does not like:
- rough leaves covered with a large number of glands and villi;
- high concentration of solanine and other chemical compounds in the terrestrial part of plants;
- faster regeneration of green mass;
- increased immunity.
Truly sustainable varieties of potatoes often have several features from the list. The following potato varieties are considered the most resistant to attack by the Colorado potato beetle:
|Grade||Ripening period||Description and specifications|
|Nikulinsky||Mid early||Table variety with elongated tubers of beige color. The pulp of tubers contains up to 21% starches. In addition to resistance to the Colorado potato beetle, it has the ability to resist fungal and viral potato diseases|
|Pace||Medium late||One of the old classic varieties with a high content of starches. The tubers are flat-round, very large, universal purpose|
|Bryansk reliable||Medium late||New variety with rounded red tubers. Features - excellent keeping quality and unsurpassed taste of root crops|
|Lassoon||Early||The tubers are yellow in color, covered with a grid of dark color, weighing up to 200 g. One of the most delicious varieties of potatoes!|
|Kamensky||Early||Tubers of red color, elongated-oval, with light yellow flesh. High starch content, universal purpose|
|Morning||Mid-season||Resistant to late blight, Colorado potato beetle and scab variety. The tubers are bright red, crumbly, very tasty|
|Nakra||Mid-season||Root crops of medium size, violet-red with yellow flesh. Advantages - resistance to cancer and high starch content. Disadvantages - instability to the golden nematode, not tasty when cooking tubers|
|Svitanok||Mid early||The tubers are pink-beige, creamy flesh, with a lot of starch (up to 22%). The disadvantage of the variety is its low resistance to late blight and viruses. Dignity - Increased Regeneration|
Despite the positive characteristics from the producers, the taste of potato varieties resistant to the Colorado potato beetle may not appeal to everyone. It is recommended to set aside a separate plot for them in order to select the variety that is most resistant to pest invasion, satisfying summer residents by taste and yield.
Most often, it is not possible to completely get rid of the Colorado potato beetle. However, the correct selection of varieties and preparations for presowing treatment of tubers can save most of the crop.