The Concept of Key Plants in Integrated Pest Management for Landscapes
Michael J. Raupp, John A. Davidson, John J. Homes, and J. Lee Hellman
Abstract: Five integrated pest management (IPM) programs for landscape plants were conducted by extension specialists at the University of Maryland between 1980 and 1982. An analysis of the insect, disease, and cultural problems of more than 30,000 plants revealed certain genera to be far more problem prone than others. Genera such as Malus, Pyracantha, Cornus, Prunus, and Rosa tended to be problem prone in almost all programs while Viburnum, Taxus, and Forsythia were relatively problem free in the mid-atlantic United States. By identifying the problem prone "key plants" in a landscape within a region, the implementation of sound pest management programs can be facilitated greatly. Management activities such as monitoring pests and applying controls can be concentrated on relatively few plants. Furthermore, an awareness of the pest prone plants allows landscape designers to create landscapes with fewer pests and lower long-term maintenance costs.