This study explored the biology of raspberry crown borer, Pennisetia marginata (Harris) (Lepidoptera: Sesiidae), in Arkansas and the optimum timing for insecticide and nematode applications. The duration of P. marginata’s life cycle was observed to be 1 yr in Arkansas. Insecticide trials revealed that bifenthrin, chlorpyrifos, imidacloprid, metaflumizone, and metofluthrin efficacy were comparable with that of azinphosmethyl, the only labeled insecticide for P. marginata in brambles until 2005. Applications on 23 October 2003 for plots treated with bifenthrin, chlorpyrifos, and azinphosmethyl resulted in >88% reduction in larvae per crown. Applications on 3 November 2004 of metaflumizone, metofluthrin, and bifenthrin resulted in >89% reduction in larvae per crown. Applications on 7 April 2005 for metofluthrin, imidacloprid, bifenthrin, metaflumizone, and benzoylphenyl urea resulted in >64% reduction in the number of larvae per crown. Applications on 6 May 2004 did not reduce larval numbers. The optimum timing for treatments was found to be between October and early April, before the larvae tunneled into the crowns of plants. Applying bifenthrin with as little as 468 liters water/ha (50 gal/acre) was found to be as effective against larvae as higher volumes of spray. Nematode applications were less successful than insecticides. Nematode applications of Steinernema feltiae, Steinernema carpocapsae, and Heterorhabditis bacteriophora reduced larvae counts per plant by 46, 53, and 33%, respectively.
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Vol. 100 • No. 2