Pest management in coconut

Black headed caterpillar, Asian red palm weevil and Rhinoceros beetle are the major pests causing considerable damage to coconut palm. Also Ganoderma wilt causes great loss to the coconut growers. Integrated pest management is a effective measure to control them which consists sanitational, mechanical, prophylactic, chemical and biocontrol methods. The neem products can be well employed without any detrimental effect to the beneficial insects like pollinators, biocontrol agents and productive insects in the coconut plantations.

Control measures

l Regularly check the crown for the presence of rhinoceros beetle.

l Hook out the beetles from the crown and kill them.

l Apply at 150g mixture of either neem seed powder 50 g plus fine sand 100g or neem seed kernel powder 50g plus fine sand 100g in the central three leaf axil bases of each palm crown once in three months. It is effective over the Asian red palm weevil’s, prevents entry into the palm crown.

l Spray either neem oil emulsion (NOE) 3% or neem seed kernel extract (NSKE) 5% on the leaves and tender nut bunches using a high volume sprayer controls scale insects, mealy bug and black/headed caterpillar

l Scrape the termite earthen galleries if any on palm trunk.

l Also spraying with either NOE 3% or NSKE 5 % and drenching the soil around the base of the plam trunk up to two meetre height from the ground level is prove to be effective to control the termite infestation.

l Application of neem cake at 5kg per palm per year in the basin of coconut palm along with the recommended doses of organic manure and major NPK fertilizers controls the (Ganoderma) wilt disease virulence in coconut palm.

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