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Integrated Pest Management

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Integrated Pest Management (IPM) is an effective and environmentally sensitive approach to pest management that relies on a combination of natural, mechanical and, common-sense practices. IPM programs use current, comprehensive information on the life cycles of pests and their interaction with the environment.

Why use it?

A lot of pest management in recent history has been banned, restricted or ineffective. The scene is unreliable and constantly shifting, so many people, especially those subscribing to organic and regenerative systems, are turning to more naturalistic and less harmful approaches to pest management. 

A farmer is taking care of the rice patty

What approaches are we interested in?

There are two main approaches we are interested in developing; Natural and Practical.

Natural or Biological systems look into the cycles of pests, and try to either disrupt natural cycles, through planting at certain times, or by introducing natural predators and deterrents. Like introducing ladybirds to reduce aphids, or vetch as a companion crop to a wheat to outcompete blackgrass.

Mechanical systems are more focussed and labour intensive, but can remove pest plants at the source. This could be through mowing, or walking the farm with a tool to uproot pests. This is more commonly heard as gas powered pigeon deterrents.

A mixture of appropriate measures, combined with a robust monitoring system, can reduce reliance on chemical pesticides and their unfortunate side effects.

Weeding

Benefits

These methods are designed to prevent any impacts of pesticides to the environment, but there are other benefits. This approach dovetails into other products such as Natural Resource Management and Enterprises, so there could be a wider project to be developed. Through intercropping some IPM species, secondary crops or nitrogen fixing can be incorporated for secondary incomes or reduced inputs. Speak to our advisors to see if these can apply to you.

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Interested?

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