Peshastin Pest Management Programs
Within the Peshastin Creek Valley the pest management practices for the pear orchards encompass the full range of management types, from Certified Organic to conventional pest management. In the Peshastin Creek Areawide Project we classify orchards as either Certified Organic, under a soft pest management program, or maintained as conventional orchards. The Organic program is limited to those materials approved under organic certification. The Soft program uses the same insecticides as the Organic program; however, growers are allowed to use other non-organic materials if necessary. For alternative treatments the first choice is always an insect growth regulator, thus maintaining the objective of preserving natural enemy populations. The Conventional program follows standard recommendations for pear production in the area. Conventional plots are allowed to use organophosphate insecticides for codling moth control.
There are an estimated 310 ac. in orchard in the Peshastin Creek Valley, the majority planted in pears and the rest in apples. For the 2003 pest monitoring program, we are sampling in 91 ac. of Certified Organic orchard, 100 ac. of orchard in soft pest management, and 38 ac. of conventional orchard. This acreage is based on GPS mapping data, and reflects only the acreage over which we are actually sampling and not necessarily the growers' whole orchard acreage. It should not necessarily be used to determine acreage for other purposes.
In 2004, several blocks moved from Conventional to Soft management and several blocks reverted from Organic certification to Conventional management. Several blocks were shifted from Organic to Soft management in 2005, following a change in ownership.
In the map below, blocks colored in GREEN are Organic pears in 2005, blocks in BLUE are in the Soft program, and RED blocks are managed under a Conventional program.