Special Issue "Urban Small Farms and Gardens Pest Management"

A special issue of Insects (ISSN 2075-4450).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 31 July 2019

Special Issue Editor

Guest Editor
Prof. Dr. Mary L. Cornelius

USDA ARS Beltsville Agricultural Research Center, Beltsville, MD, USA
Website | E-Mail
Interests: biological control; integrated pest management; natural enemies; invasive species; behavioral ecology of insect parasitoids and predators

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Small farms and urban gardens are emerging as key components in local and regional food production.  Since many of the small-scale commercial farms and backyard gardens are located in urban and suburban areas, there is a need to develop alternatives to insecticide use. The diversity of crops grown in small farms and urban gardens requires complex solutions that target a variety of pest species. In many cases, there are no suitable pest management solutions for controlling pests attacking crops grown in small farms and urban gardens. Novel pest management practices will need to be developed that address pest problems without relying on insecticide use. Alternative pest management solutions could include (1) the development of biological control strategies to enhance populations of natural enemies of pests, (2) the use of pheromone-based lures to attract and kill pests, (3) the use of microbial insecticides to control pests, and (4) the use of biopesticides using botanical compounds or RNAi techniques to control pests. This Special Issue will focus on identifying the pest problems associated with small farms and urban gardens and on developing alternative solutions for improving pest management practices in urban and suburban areas.

Prof. Dr. Mary L. Cornelius
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Insects is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1000 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Published Papers (2 papers)

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Research

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Open AccessArticle
Local and Landscape Drivers of Carabid Activity, Species Richness, and Traits in Urban Gardens in Coastal California
Insects 2019, 10(4), 112; https://doi.org/10.3390/insects10040112
Received: 22 March 2019 / Revised: 12 April 2019 / Accepted: 17 April 2019 / Published: 19 April 2019
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Abstract
Urban ecosystems, as mosaics of residential, industrial, commercial, and agricultural land, present challenges for species survival due to impervious surface, degradation, fragmentation, and modification of natural habitat, pollution, and introduced species. Some urban habitats, such as community gardens, support biodiversity and promote ecosystem [...] Read more.
Urban ecosystems, as mosaics of residential, industrial, commercial, and agricultural land, present challenges for species survival due to impervious surface, degradation, fragmentation, and modification of natural habitat, pollution, and introduced species. Some urban habitats, such as community gardens, support biodiversity and promote ecosystem services. In gardens, local factors (e.g., vegetation, groundcover) and landscape surroundings (e.g., agriculture, built or impervious cover) may influence species abundance, richness, and functional traits that are present. We examined which local and landscape factors within 19 community gardens in the California central coast influence ground beetle (Carabidae) activity density, species richness, functional group richness, and functional traits—body size, wing morphology, and dispersal ability. Gardens with higher crop richness and that are surrounded by agricultural land had greater carabid activity density, while species and functional group richness did not respond to any local or landscape factor. Gardens with more leaf litter had lower carabid activity, and gardens with more leaf litter tended to have more larger carabids. Changes in local (floral abundance, ground cover) and landscape (urban land cover) factors also influenced the distribution of individuals with certain wing morphology and body size traits. Thus, both local and landscape factors influence the taxonomic and functional traits of carabid communities, with potential implications for pest control services that are provided by carabids. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Urban Small Farms and Gardens Pest Management)
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Review

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Open AccessReview
Integrated Pest Management (IPM) for Small-Scale Farms in Developed Economies: Challenges and Opportunities
Insects 2019, 10(6), 179; https://doi.org/10.3390/insects10060179
Received: 15 May 2019 / Revised: 10 June 2019 / Accepted: 19 June 2019 / Published: 21 June 2019
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Abstract
Small-scale farms are an important component of agricultural production even in developed economies, and have an acknowledged role in providing other biological and societal benefits, including the conservation of agricultural biodiversity and enhancement of local food security. Despite this, the small-farm sector is [...] Read more.
Small-scale farms are an important component of agricultural production even in developed economies, and have an acknowledged role in providing other biological and societal benefits, including the conservation of agricultural biodiversity and enhancement of local food security. Despite this, the small-farm sector is currently underserved in relation to the development and implementation of scale-appropriate Integrated Pest Management (IPM) practices that could help increase such benefits. This review details some of the characteristics of the small farm sectors in developed economies (with an emphasis on the USA and Europe), and identifies some of the characteristics of small farms and their operators that may favor the implementation of IPM. Some of the challenges and opportunities associated with increasing the uptake of IPM in the small-farm sector are discussed. For example, while some IPM tactics are equally applicable to virtually any scale of production, there are others that may be easier (or more cost-effective) to implement on a smaller scale. Conversely, there are approaches that have not been widely applied in small-scale production, but which nevertheless have potential for use in this sector. Examples of such tactics are discussed. Knowledge gaps and opportunities for increasing IPM outreach to small-scale producers are also identified. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Urban Small Farms and Gardens Pest Management)
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