TARGET PEST: Two-spotted spider mite (Tetranychus urticae)
Phytoseiulus persimilis is a tropical predatory mite that was one of the first greenhouse biological control agents available commercially. Both adult and immature predators move rapidly over the leaves and both feed on two-spotted mite eggs, nymphs, and adults. This aggressive, tropical predator of two spotted spider mite needs fairly warm conditions to survive. Optimum conditions are 68-81°F, the predators reproduce faster than spider mites.
- 1-3+ per square foot of canopy
P. persimilis is sold either in a granular carrier (usually vermiculite) or on bean leaves. P. persimilis in vermiculite is available in high-density mixtures for hotspots, and low-density formulations. Low-density formulations are only for use before spider mites are detected in the crop. P. persimilis is most effective when applied at the first sign of a two-spotted mite infestation. Once spider mites are detected it is essential to establish predators as soon as possible by introducing P. persimilis either on leaves or in the hotspot formulation. Note that although the bean leaves contain a few two-spotted mites, this does not add to the pest problem because the predators quickly eliminate them. The presence of this food enables P. persimilis to start reproducing immediately, which improves biological control. Because of its high reproduction rate, P. persimilis usually exhausts its food supply and eventually dies out, therefore repeated introductions are recommended until all sites with spider mite infestations have P. persimilis present.
Orders for Phytoseiulus persimilis must be received by noon on Friday for shipment the following week. If the deadline is past, please call us and we will help you find a solution ASAP. (360) 656-6680
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