Biological Pest Control Basics

Biological pest control

Lady beetle, by Scott Bauer. (Wikimedia Commons) Managing pests is an important part of cultivating plants whether you are tending a small garden in your yard or several fields of crops. Insect predators can make short work of healthy plants, particularly if insect predators are in abundance. The good news is that there are natural ways to combat these pests that growers have been utilizing for many years. Granted, not all solutions are created equal. There are a number of reasons why biological control efforts may fail; including breeding being out of sync or the countermeasure not being strong enough.

We need an Integrated Farm Bill now

The NY Times recently held a “debate” titled The Farm Bill, Beyond the Farm. I put debate in quotes because there weren’t any pieces that directly opposed each other. Instead, each discussed different parts of the farm bill so we didn’t get to see any differences in opinion on the same issues. This group of eight activist-writers includes two lawyers, a social worker, an economist, and a lobbyist. One has a background in biology and ag economics. One grew up on a farm and might still farm in Oklahoma (I wasn’t able to find clear info) but works in media full