Marc Vissers, PCS (research station on ornementals), Belgium

The PCS (Proefcentrum voor Sierteelt) is a research station dedicated to the cultivation of ornamental plants, located in Destelbergen (Belgium). For over 20 years, a large number of researches have been conducted in the area of crop protection, with both pesticides and biological control agents. For the prevention of pest resistance to various products, the use of beneficial insects has become an important part of a sustainable crop protection strategy. Marc Vissers, coordinator of indoor plants department routinely uses predatory mites against thrips, whiteflies and spidermites and OrnaProtect against aphids. Marc Vissers: “When trials are conducted with predatory mites or pesticides, you must try to spray as little as possible with other agents. Similarly, in our side effects trials with pesticides, where the impact of products on the predatory mites is tested, we cannot spray other products, which would mean the end of the trial. That is why we are very pleased with parasitoids of OrnaProtect. They are not a miracle solution to all the problems of aphids on all plant species, but allow good control of several species of aphids in several crops. On these crops, we no longer need to spray aphicide and predatory mites remain active. It is for these reasons that I recommend to ornamental growers using OrnaProtect, and not just to those who already use biological control but also to the others: they have only a limited number of active substances and as long as they do not need to spray chemicals, no resistance against these products develops. In this way, they can reserve a part of their insecticides interventions to pests more difficult to control as mealybugs, whiteflies or thrips.

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Joris Volckaert

Joris Volckaert’s nursery in Nazareth (Belgium) has 0.5 hectares of heated glasshouses. Joris grows a variety of houseplant species including Kalanchoë, Muehlenbeckia, Vinca Rosea (Madagascar periwinkle), Chrysanthemum and Poinsettia. Throughout 2012, Joris used OrnaProtect to control aphids in his most important crops (Kalanchoë and Muehlenbeckia). Several species of aphid occurred in these crops in the course of the year, but OrnaProtect kept all of them under control. The main advantage of OrnaProtect, according to Joris, is that his insecticide use has been greatly reduced in comparison with previous years. Any spraying carried out was localised. He sums up his experience as follows: “I am really pleased with the spectacular effectiveness and convenience of the product, although it does require thorough scouting and a change in mentality on the part of the grower”. He adds that OrnaProtect will be his primary method of aphid control in the future.

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The nursery Hanka

Hanka nursery in Kempen (Germany) grows several species of ornamental plants including white potato vine (Solanum jasminoides), Helianthus or Argyranthemum on an area of 3.4 ha of greenhouse. The company is characterized by a high interest in innovative and environmentally friendly technologies and invested, for example, in a geothermal heating and heat pumps. In 2012, Mr. Uellekes, responsible for the cultures of Solanum jasminoides, used OrnaProtect in his greenhouse of mother plants. These plants are extremely valuable as they provide cuttings for the entire production of Solanum for the company. Throughout the year, aphid attacks were well controlled and no insecticide against aphids was necessary. According to Mr. Uellekes, the system OrnaProtect is really attractive. Its use is very simple and fast. He adds: “The workers in charge of the harvest of cuttings are continuously in contact with the plants. Reducing their exposure to chemicals is one of our priorities. With OrnaProtect, we have significantly reduced the amount of insecticides used in this greenhouse compared to what we did in the past. Without any doubt, we will extend the use of OrnaProtect to other departments of our production. “

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Peter Sprünken

Peter Sprünken’s nursery in Straelen-Holt (Germany) is specialized in the production of Argyranthemum and seedlings of Cyclamen. In 2012, Peter Sprünken tested OrnaProtect in heated greenhouses in over half of his operation units. Attacks from the foxglove aphid and from the peach potato aphid on Argyranthemum were well controlled in the spring as were those of the cotton aphid on Cyclamen later in the season. In the greenhouse under conventional pest management, two chemical treatments were necessary to control aphids. Retrospectively, Mr. Sprünken said: “OrnaProtect is a really good concept. As I produce different plant species, several species of aphids can cause problems. This year, thanks to OrnaProtect, aphids, whatever the species, were no longer a concern. “

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The municipal greenhouses of Roubaix

The city of Roubaix is fully autonomous for its plant production for annual and biennial flowering of public spaces. In its 4000 m² of greenhouses, it produces a large number of different species of ornamental plants. Since 2007, the fight against pests entirely follows the integrated pest management (IPM) guidelines. In this context, OrnaProtect was tested in 2012 on the entire surface of the municipal greenhouses. On the production of summer flowers (Ipomea, Ageratum, Argyranthemum, Swiss chard, Rudbeckia …), no insecticide treatment was needed. For the production of autumn flowers (pansy, dusty miller, common daisies …), OrnaProtect has reduced insecticide use of several generalized treatments usually to a single spot treatment. According to the site manager, Isabelle Chansellé-Becue, the results are really satisfactory. In addition to efficacy, she praises ease of use and the working comfort that it generates at the staff level. Without hesitation, Mrs. Chansellé-Bécue adds: “We had the chance to be the first municipality to test OrnaProtect and we will continue to use it in the future. It is a product that I also recommend to my colleagues for the benefits it provides and for its effectiveness. “

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Managing Director Andreas Pellens – The hydrangea nursery Pellens GmbH in Geldern

The hydrangea nursery Pellens GmbH in Geldern, Germany, produces annually 1.500.000
hortensia, out of this 80% as raw material. The 30 coworkers of the company care about more than 40 different varieties, which grow up on 17 hectares.

Managing director Andreas Pellens used OrnaProtect in the greenhouse from January to October 2011. During the cooler season the green-spotted potato aphid (Aulacorthum solani) was observed. This aphid species has been controled by OrnaProtect, as were all other different aphid species appearing later in the season.

Retrospectively on the year Mr. Pellens says: „The application of OrnaProtect is simple and can be accomplished – contrary to chemical treatments – by untrained personnel. By using a cocktail of different aphid ennemies I save labor and thus expenditures for monitoring and for aphid identification, which so far was necessary for the use of parasitoid wasps. For me, OrnaProtect is a convincing concept. “

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Managing director Wolfgang Ripkens used OrnaProtect in cyclamen

The nursery of ornamental plants Wolfgang Ripkens in Straelen, Germany, produces, among other plants, on several thousand square meters Cyclamen. Since more than a decade, Mr Ripkens uses beneficial insects for plant protection under integrated pest management. This approach has been convincing, because it does not result in the development of resistance as it is observed by using chemical pesticides, and because it strongly decreases the handling of chemicals by the workers.

Managing director Wolfgang Ripkens used OrnaProtect in the greenhouse from end of March until mid-October 2011. During the crop season, some individuals of the green-spotted potato aphid (Aulacorthum solani) were observed sporadically. This aphid species has the characteristic to overwinter in form of eggs. However, it has been controlled by OrnaProtect, as were all other different aphid species trying to establish in the crop.

Retrospectively on the year Mr. Ripkens says: „The application of OrnaProtect is simple and fast, I save about 60% of labor time. Throughout the season, all appearing aphids were perfectly controlled.
Moreover, the use of a mix of six different parasitoid species gives me more security, and I do not need to invest anymore in the difficult task of aphid identification. The simplicity of using OrnaProtect convinced me.”

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