Agriculture: Asparagus Pest Management Guidelines

Postharvest

This year-round IPM program covers the major pests of fresh asparagus and nursery production of crowns in the Sacramento-San Joaquin River Delta, Central Coast, southern San Joaquin Valley, and southern desert valleys.

About Postharvest (fern stage: end of harvest to beginning of dormancy)

What should you be doing during this time?

Monitor for European asparagus aphid and their damage:

  • Shake or beat samples to look for aphids and their natural enemies.
  • Look for bonsai growth.
  • Treat according to the Pest Management Guidelines.

Examine ferns twice weekly for:

  • Beet armyworm—treat according to the Pest Management Guidelines when larvae are visibly present in the ferns.
  • Rust lesions—treat according to the Pest Management Guidelines when rust first appears.

If thrips damage is detected (needle drop), treat according to the Pest Management Guidelines.

Manage weeds:

  • Till beds after final harvest.
  • Apply herbicides to control perennial weeds such as bermudagrass.
  • Cultivate weeds if necessary just before ferns grow too tall for tractors to enter the field.

Other pests you may see:

  • Asparagus beetle
  • Asparagus miner
  • Western yellowstriped armyworm
Text Updated: 09/11