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          Welcome to Sound Horticulture

          Ecological solutions for managing greenhouse environments, farms and specialty crop systems. Specializing in the freshest sources of high quality beneficial insects, compost tea machines, and supportive biological tools of the trade. Innovative designs that “close the loop” and work for you. Contact us today!

          From the blog

          • November 09, 2018 Invasive Alert!: Emerald Ash Borer
            Invasive Alert!: Emerald Ash Borer

            Keep an eye out for the Emerald Ash Borer, Agrilus planipennis. It has been detected in 24 states, including our state of Washington, and parts of Eastern Canada. Civic involvement in pest ID and entomology is a powerful thing. Please inspect your local trees. 

            In Washington, our native "Oregon Ash" Fraxinus latifolia is of particular concern. Additionally white ash (F. americana) and green ash (F. pennsylvanica) are common targets as they are often planted as ornamental shade trees. If you suspect EAB, please call 1-800-443-6684.

            See this link for more information regarding ID, and what you can do. 

          • November 02, 2018 Beneficial Entomopathogenic Nematodes for Pest Control
            Beneficial Entomopathogenic Nematodes for Pest Control

            It's commonly known that there are pathogenic nematodes which can cause damage to plants, but did you know that there are species of nematodes which are actually used to control pests? We refer to these beneficial nematodes as entomopathogenic nematodes. We like to think of beneficial nematodes as a fantastic starting place for those new to biocontrol. Why? Because they truly work so well, AND they are compatible with many pesticides and fungicides. In other words, even conventional growers can seamlessly integrate nematodes into their operation without forfeiting the use of various conventional pesticides they may be using in their IPM program. Sound too good to be true? We know these little roundworms are extremely tough and efficacious. As an example, nematodes can actually freeze their metabolism in the absence of adequate food or oxygen, but continue to survive until circumstances improve. This state is called "cryptobiosis". Additionally, after the 1981 Columbia space shuttle disaster, nematodes were the only known survivors.

            When you are considering which nematodes to purchase, consider not only the correct speci you need to control the problematic pest at hand, but also the production method. Nematodes produced "in vivo" tend to yield a very high numbers of infective juveniles which are largely responsible for the killing of pests. This production method utilizes wax worm cadavers to breed healthy nematodes, which contain a very high level of infective bacteria (see the featured diagram of the life cycle). In vivo nematodes also requires a much lower application rate per sq. ft. of soil when compared with "in vitro" nematodes. 

            Our Sierra nematodes are produced in vivo and yield exceptional results for our customers. For more information about Sierra nematode production, species available, and some guidelines for speci and pest pairing, refer to this link or feel free to contact us directly for more information.

             

          • October 22, 2018 Watch Your Feet!
            Watch Your Feet!

            When it comes to your IPM program, are you employing all the stops? Are you adequately considering these components of your IPM program?

             

            1)Removing debris (cultural control)- fungal pathogens (i.e. botrytis).

            2)Properly sanitizing surfaces, pots, soil, and tools.

            3)Stopping entry and vectoring at the door!

             

            Proper sanitation is imperative for maintaining a good integrated pest and disease management program and stopping pests “at the door” should be the first line of defense. Within the larger industry, there are an array of needs in the sanitation department. Without being able to touch on them all, let’s talk about your feet! As we approach fall weather, pests are certainly looking to hitch a ride into indoor environments and greenhouses. That said, vectoring pests in and out of various facilities, greenhouses, or rooms, is a potential problem all season long. How are your growers and employees moving through the facility? Avoid allowing growers to work in contaminated areas and then move to propagation later in the day. Consider supplying a change of clothes and even crocs or boots for employees. 

            We work to stay abreast of all the updates and changes in the industry and in biocontrol and share that information with all of you. That said, some trusted principles and products have not changed for decades and remain trusted industry standards.

            To assist with this continued concern, we made have ordered in products to make it easy for our customers. Whether you are moving from stock to finishing areas, or from outdoors to indoors, having a sanitation mat is critical for vectoring reduction. For fall, we are combining the long-standing industry sanitation product, Green Shield, with the sanitation mats as a package deal. We don’t want you to call us in crisis!

            For $147 you can receive 1 gallon of Green Shield with our favorite type of sanitation mat.

          • October 17, 2018 Sound Hort's Sounding Board
            Sound Hort's Sounding Board

            We’ve seen so many changes over the last couple years, within our business as well as the many varied sectors of organic agriculture, conventional agriculture, and larger horticultural industries. The use of biocontrol is expanding with each year, and with that, our business has been growing. In fact, we just moved to a larger facility to accommodate additional warehousing of biological products and to expand the capacity of our shipping facility. Last year, we started our ecommerce online store to accommodate customers who prefer to shop online. As an extension of that, we are working to keep our blog updated with pertinent information for all of you working to continually improve and learn. We pride ourselves in our customer service and go out of our way to host workshops, make ourselves available to customers, and to openly share pertinent information to all of you who are trying shore up your pest management.

            It’s estimated that 40% of the world’s food production is lost each year due to pest and diseases related failure. Our goal is to provide tactics and products in order to properly manage pests, while remaining environmentally conscious. Additionally, we encourage growers to develop natural habitats for hosting beneficial populations. We recognize that the growth we are experiencing is an industry-wide and environmental success. Pest resistance to conventional chemicals is not going away, while the domestic and international tightening of chemical regulation is on the rise. As growers experience the limitations of chemicals, they are now leaning on biological controls and biologically based practices. Meanwhile, consumers are asking that their products be produced using clean practices, whether it be ornamental crops, food crops, herbs, cannabis, or the plant based inputs of their supplements…EVERYTHING! We find this grassroots movement extremely exciting and encouraging!

            So welcome to the green side! We are here to assist.

          ordering

          ordering

          Welcome to our web store! We order beneficial insects weekly from our suppliers to ship on Wednesdays, so please check ordering deadlines, and always feel free to contact us with questions.

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