Integrated Pest management (IPM)
Pest management is an incredibly important part of what we do at the Danforth PGF. Pests are a major concern in greenhouses and chambers. Even a small number of pests can do a lot of damage. This page details some of the basic information about what we do to manage pest pressures, what safety precautions we take, what safety measures you should take, and what you can do to help.
What You Need to Know About Pests
Believe it or not, pests are as big a problem in a greenhouse as they are in a field. Fields have rich, diverse ecosystems to help keep unwanted pests in check. Greenhouses and growth chambers are isolated environments by design, but the defenses we put up are not impenetrable. Pests can enter a greenhouse through the tiniest cracks in doors, windows, walls, or floors, hitch rides on our clothes, or simply float in on an air current. They are a major challenge for greenhouse research and production facilities.
Pesticides and pesticide safety
The rules and regulations of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the Missouri Department of Agriculture are strictly enforced at the Danforth Center. All PGF pesticide applicators are either certified by the Missouri Department of Agriculture or operate under a certified applicator's license.
Because pesticides are not a magic bullet for pest issues, biological control (bio-control) has become an important part of our IPM strategy at the Danforth Center. In addition to providing pest control pressure, bio-control methods have the added benefit of being safer for humans and the environment.