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Integrated pest management (IPM)

Alana Rossi
August 19, 2023

Integrated pest management (IPM) refers to proactively implementing diverse science-based strategies to prevent, monitor, control and reduce pest problems through early intervention and an escalating hierarchy of gentle, low-impact treatment approaches. Unlike reactive problem solving only after infestations strike, IPM starts with prevention-focused cultivation strategies and environmental controls to avoid pests and associated crop damage from ever occurring in the first place. Careful year-round crop monitoring quickly flags any arising issues while still localized so they can be swiftly addressed before spreading. If stimulated to act, IPM programs first implement gentler biological controls like predatory beneficial insects before considering chemical controls only as a last resort. By integrating multiple tactics, IPM aims to holistically sustain plant, human and environmental health together for the long haul. The comprehensive big picture framework optimizes yields while minimizing risks and ecological impacts. Keeping grow spaces in proper balance through thoughtful IPM minimizes the need for harsher chemical interventions later.

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