Evaluation of Fumigants for Pest Management and Seedling Production in Southern Pine Nurseries
The South's forest-products industry, as well as nonindustrial private landowners throughout the region, depend on forest-tree nurseries for the continuing production of high quality seedlings that survive well and grow quickly when outplanted. In recent years, southern pine nurseries have produced 1.1 to 1.65 billion seedlings annually, a production level that accounts for 69 to 78 percent of all forest-tree seedlings produced in the United States. Nursery managers have long used methyl bromide as a key component of their pest management programs to provide broad-spectrum control of weeds, disease-causing organisms, nematodes, and insects. Many managers routinely fumigate after every second pine crop, although some still employ fumigation after every crop. The successful development of future integrated pest management (IPM) programs will depend upon identifying the pest problems that will affect nursery production in the absence of methyl bromide fumigation, evaluating potential alternative fumigants and other pesticides, and determining when they are needed.