Trip is one of the most common parasites.
These small, fast-moving insects feed by sucking the lifeblood of the plant and, although it is not one of the most lethal parasites that your cultivation can have, you need to be careful when it appears because it can really represent a problem if the plant is in the initial phase of its life (small seedlings, cuttings, etc.).
It is important that you know how to identify, prevent and eliminate this unwanted presence if you do not want your crop to suffer. These are the keys to doing it, keep reading...
What are Trips?
The trip (Thripidae) is a tiny insect belonging to the order Thysanoptera, with a length between 1 and 1.5 millimetres.
The Trip that usually attacks our plants is the one that corresponds to the name of Frankliniella Occidentales, a small yellowish-white invader . As an adult, it has an elongated shape and flies from plant to plant. This type of infestation is easier to find indoors than in greenhouses.
The trip reproduces up to twelve times in a year, its life cycle oscillates between a month and a year and, although it is not one of the fastest parasites, it is important to combat it from the beginning of its appearance , since once it has insinuated, it is very difficult to eradicate.
How to understand if the crop has been affected by the trip?
In this case, as with all pests , time is a crucial factor that will play against you, so watch out for any signs that may indicate that your plants have been attacked :
By placing yellow chromotropic adhesive traps and observing them every day, you will be able to find out if your cultivation has been attacked by trips because some parasites will remain attached to them.
The trip grates the tissue of the leaves, sucking the lifeblood of the plant to feed itself or, in the case of females, to deposit its eggs, which are not visible to the naked eye.
Therefore, you will have to pay attention to the appearance of signs: a light silvery sheen on the surface of the leaves or, if the parasite has already spread, small dots will also appear, the Trip's feces.
The Trip can be found in the middle and lowest area of the plant and is visible to the human eye even if it is not easy to see it, because these small elongated parasites camouflage themselves by placing themselves in a parallel position with respect to the nerves of the leaves or in the space where two leaves they overlap. When they notice movement, they typically stay put and wait for their camouflage to make them go unnoticed.
If the parasite is at an advanced stage, the leaves will become brittle due to the loss of chlorophyll and may even dry out, although it is difficult to reach this stage, because you should take action much earlier.
How to prevent tripping in cultivation?
If you are by growing outdoors or in a greenhouse, clean up any weeds that may grow scattered and possible remains of the previous cultivation.
Change the substrate from one grow to another and throw away the old one.
Insert predatory species such as the Amblyseius swirskii
Spray a few times natural insecticide : Neem oil or potassium soap.
How to combat tripping in cultivation?
The trip's life cycle goes through several stages, when it is in the larva stage, it positions itself in the substrate, which is where the change occurs to become pre-pupa. it will not be useful to concentrate efforts on eliminating the adults already found on the stems and leaves if the larvae found in the substrate are not also eliminated. Therefore, at the same time as the biological fight that takes place on the plant, it is good practice to apply some biological insecticide on the soil, in order to eliminate any possible larvae present .
To spray: there are several organic products that act on contact and are effective against trips: pyrethrins, potassium soap and Neem oil (to be applied 2/3 times a week). It is important to make sure you have the trip is eliminated before the plants enter the flowering phase , which is why prevention is essential, in fact it is always better to avoid spraying products on the flowers. If the plants are in the flowering phase when you discover the Trip infestation, it would be better to introduce antagonistic-predatory insects.
After having carried out the nebulisations, you can use predatory species to be sure of the complete elimination of the trip . Naturally it is necessary to first nebulise and then introduce the antagonistic insects which would suffer the effect of the pesticide. Some species of antagonistic insects to use:
Amblyseius cucumeris. Amblyseius barkeri, Neoseiulus cucumeris, Iphiseius degenerans, Neoseiulus barkeri, Euseius hibisci.
Parasitic wasps: Thripobis simulteus, Ceranisus menes, Gotheana Shakesoearei.
Orius: these insects, belonging to the Anthocoridae family, are predators that feed on mites and tripe.
Organic trip control products based on the fungus Verticillium lecani are effective and not harmful to the natural predators mentioned above, therefore they can be added to the two treatments.