Advisory ArticleAgroStar Agronomy Centre of Excellence
Trap Crop in Cropping Ecosystem Helps Control Insect Pest of Field & Horticultural Crop
The crop sown in a small area or in and around the field crop is known as a trap crop and is preferred by the main crop's insect pest. The trap crop is not cultivated for any extra revenue purpose. The female adult insect pest prefers to lay eggs on the trap crop compared to the main crop. Pest damage can be decreased by raising the trap crop and increasing the population of natural enemies.
Trap Crops Facts:
• Sowing of mustard around the cabbage field and after every 25 rows can be done. Cabbage infesting pest, i.e. diamondback moth, prefers to lay egg on mustard more compared to cabbage. The harm caused by this pest can be decreased by planting trap crops. In addition, the aphid population is also reduced.
• Cotton and tomato field transplantation after every 10 rows; bollworm/fruit borer prefers to lay eggs on marigold flowers more than primary crops. Full blooming marigold flowers should be plucked periodically.
• Grow castor as a trap crop in and around the field to decrease infestation of leaf-eating caterpillars in cotton, groundnut and tobacco-like crops. Collect and kill the castor leaves periodically with the present egg masses on the leaves. Transplant marigold as trap crop for leaf miner in and around the tomato field.
• Raise tomato crops as a trap crop of citrus leaf miner and manage the pest. •
• Napier grass is considered to be a trap crop for fall armyworm that is harmful to maize crops; it should be grown around the field.
• Raising of sun hemp around the groundnut, soybean, cowpea like crop to reduce the damage caused by hairy caterpillars.
• Radish is known as trap crop for the flea beetle causing damage to cabbage crop.
• Trap crop should be raised along with the main crop or earlier.
• Do not spray any kind of insecticides on the trap crop.
• Perform proper agronomical practices to maintain the trap crop in the field.
Source: AgroStar Agronomy Centre of Excellence
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