Does anyone have an idea of which methods, or innovative techniques we can use to determine in advance the crop pests and diseases?
I think this is one of the most pressing challenges facing farmers (especially small scale farmers) around the world. In areas where universities or government agencies are doing active research and extension, they can often extend early detection warning for an area and give helpful guidance before whole fields are destroyed. But some places have limited availability of resources like this or detection comes too late…
Frequent crop monitoring is one of the most important things a farmer can do as well as clear community collaboration to communicate disease and pest pressure in neighboring areas. ECHO recently published an article by Clare Liptak and Tim Motis that overviews principles and practices in crop monitoring for early detection of insect pests, summarizes a simple monitoring trial performed at ECHO’s farm in Florida, and gives a list of additional Integrated Pest Management (IPM) resources.
On ECHO Community there is also an IPM list of resources.
We are hoping to strengthen our informational resources on pest monitoring and management as it is a large demand from network members like you, Joel! Please feel free to suggest certain areas of interest and we will consider applications for trials on our farm that we can later share with the network! These may be just small trials that we incorporate into our working farm, but they can be very insightful!