Irish Potato Pests

Matthew J. Blua, Andrew Jensen, and Neil Bell
March 2016
Home Use revised March 2015

Includes management options for commercial and home use.

In all cases, follow the instructions on the pesticide label. The PNW Insect Management Handbook has no legal status, whereas the pesticide label is a legal document. Read the product label before making any pesticide applications.

Note: Products are listed in alphabetical order and not in order of preference or superiority of pest control.

It is absolutely essential to consult pesticide labels for rates, timings, safety precautions, plant-back restrictions, etc. prior to making a recommendation or deciding on a treatment program. There are web resources available to search for labeled pesticides and to see specimen labels of products. Some of these include: —This is a database of all pesticides registered in Washington and Oregon. It is a thorough database with many search options, but lacks a complete collection of specimen labels.

Copies of almost all pesticide labels can be found on the following sites. In addition, these companies offer searchable databases of products and which pests and crops are on their labels. These web resources allow thorough research on pesticide products prior to making recommendations or treatment decisions.

For general information on potato insect pests, see the following websites:

Special Note about Resistance Management

At least three of the important pests of potato are known worldwide for developing resistance to insecticides. Of particular concern are green peach aphid (Myzus persicae), Colorado potato beetle (Leptinotarsa decemlineata), and potato tuberworm (Phthorimaea operculella). To prevent development of populations of these pests resistant to insecticides, it is very important that growers do not rely on products with a single mode of action. Of particular concern is the class of insecticides known as neonicotinoids (Group 4A in Tables 1-2 of this section). These are highly effective insecticides that in potatoes can control many pests season-long. Resistance to this class of chemistry has developed in Colorado potato beetle in other parts of the U.S., and care must be taken to avoid that development in the PNW. If used at planting or as a seed treatment, neonicotinoid products should not be used as a foliar treatment. Avoid treating large contiguous areas with any single class of chemistry. For much more detail on this matter, see