Apr 5, 2016
New berry crop insecticides, miticides introduced

Kathy Demchak, senior Extension associate at Penn State University, discusses changes with insecticides and miticides for use on berry crops in the last few years:

A tarnished plant bug on a strawberry flower. Photo: Kathleen Demchak
A tarnished plant bug on a strawberry flower. Photo: Kathleen Demchak

New (or nearly new) products


BeLeaf (flonicamid, Group 9C) is labeled for use on strawberries for control of aphids and for suppression of tarnished plant bugs. It has a 0-day PHI and a 12-hour REI. This product should be used while populations are still low. It causes the insects to stop feeding quickly, but there could be a lag between the time that the product is applied and insect numbers decrease.


Exirel (cyantraniliprole, Group 28) can be used on bushberries for control of spotted wing drosphila, cherry and cranberry fruitworm, blueberry aphid, blueberry maggot, plum curculio, and for blueberry gall midge suppression. It has a 3-day PHI and a 12-hour REI. It has been very effective against spotted wing drosophila in trials.


Nealta (cyflumetofen, Group 25) is a new miticide for use against two-spotted spider mites in strawberries. It is in different chemical class than other miticides labeled for use on strawberries, and is easy on beneficials.  As with other miticides, resistance development is a concern, so growers are limited to the number of applications that can be made per growing season – in this case, 2. The PHI is 1 day, and the REI is 12 hours.

Sivanto Prime

Sivanto Prime (flupyradifurone) is labeled for use on bushberries (blueberries, etc.) for control of aphids, blueberry maggot, and blueberry thrips with a 3-day PHI, and fruiting vegetables which includes gogi berry (it’s in the tomato family) with a 1-day PHI. It also may be used on crops in the low-growing berry group (which includes lowbush blueberries and strawberries) for aphids, whiteflies, blueberry thrips and blueberry maggot (which are not problems on strawberries – this is just because of the crop grouping wording) with a 0-day PHI. The REI is 4 hours, though it is longer for certain operations with grapes and in California.


Rimon (novaluron, Group 15) has been around for a few years, but is of interest because it can be used to control eggs and larvae of sap beetles on strawberries. It also can be used to control nymphs of tarnished plant bugs. On strawberries, it has a 1-day PHI. It also is labeled for use on bushberries (blueberries, elderberries, gooseberries, currants, etc.) with an 8-day PHI and can be used for control of cranberry fruitworm, oblique-banded leafroller, and blueberry maggot. It has a 12-hour REI. It interferes with growth of the insect, and thus is effective only on the eggs, nymphs, or larval stages of the insect’s life cycle.


Altacor (chlorantraniliprole) is labeled for control of crown borer on caneberries, and should be applied as a delayed dormant spray for this purpose.  Like Rimon, it has been available for use a few years, but is being mentioned because there are few products available for crown borer management. It works by causing insects to stop feeding and is effective on newly-hatched larvae. The stage that is being targeted in the spring is larvae overwintering in the soil before they bore into the canes. Sprays are directed to the base of the canes and should be watered in. This pest has a multiple-year life cycle, so applications will be necessary for more than one year to achieve control. It has a 1-day PHI and a 4-hour REI.


Hero (zeta-cypermethrin plus bifenthrin) has also been around for a few years, and is also of interest as it can also be used to control crown borers on caneberries. It is a restricted-use product, and like Altacor, is directed to the base of the canes, but is applied as a drench application. It can be applied in fall or spring. It has a 3-day PHI on caneberries. It also can be used on blueberries for an assortment of insects and mites with a 1-day PHI. The REI is 12 hours.


Flubendiamide (Belt) use can be continued while EPA’s “Intent to Cancel Registration” filing for this product (due concerns about breakdown product toxicity to aquatic organisms) is under review. Uses that had been on other products containing flubendiamide as the active ingredient (Synapse, Vetica) now appear on the Belt label.

There are also several “softer” materials of interest.


Grandevo is a biological insecticide which is a fermentation product of a bacterium. It has a 2(ee) label for use against spotted wing drosophila on caneberries and bushberries, and can be used on strawberries to manage tarnished plant bug, aphids, thrips and whiteflies. On bushberries and caneberries, it is also labeled for use against fruitworms, aphids, and thrips. It has a 0-day PHI and 4-hr REI, and should be used when pest populations are still low and/or in younger growth stages.


Azera (azadirectin plus pyrethrins) can be used in organic production. It is labeled for a wide range of crops and pests, and has a 0-day PHI and 12-hour REI.


Captiva (capsicum oleoresin extract plus garlic oil plus soybean oil) is labeled for use on a wide range of crops including all berries to repel and suppress soft-bodied insects and mites. It has a 0-day PHI and a 4-hour REI.


Venerate (heat-killed Burkholderia spp. strain A396 cells and spent fermentation media) is a bioinsecticide. It should be applied early when pest populations are low and the pests are newly-hatched. On caneberries, bushberries, and strawberries, it is intended for control of various fruitworms and for suppression of aphids, thrips, and stink bugs. On strawberries, it is also intended for suppression of tarnished plant bugs. It has a 0-day PHI and a 4-hour REI.

Two products for which uses are being discontinued:


Endosulfan (Thionex, Thiodan) can only be bought for use on perennial (matted row) strawberries until May 31, 2016. It can only be used on perennial strawberries until July 31, 2016, where its main purpose is for control of cyclamen mites with applications made in early spring and/or at renovation. Use on other small fruit crops, including annual strawberries, has already been discontinued due to the fact that the active ingredient accumulates in the food chain.


Closer (sulfoxaflor, Group 4C) had been labeled for use on strawberries, but last fall EPA issued a cancellation order for the product, after the federal Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that the EPA improperly approved the registration. Growers can use existing stock of product they already have for the uses appearing on the label, but will not be able to obtain new product at this time.

As always, the label is the law—pesticides can only be used in the manner consistent with the product label. Products must be registered for use in the state in which they are applied. To protect pollinators, insecticides should never be applied during bloom, and precautions as listed on the label to protect pollinators should always be followed.

Kathy Demchak, Penn State University

Source: Penn State Extension


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