Chard, Swiss-Armyworm, cutworm, and looper

Various species

Pest description, crop damage and life history

See:

Management-cultural control

Weed control is important. Lambsquarters and wild mustard attract egg-laying females and provide a source of food for larvae. Fall tillage can help destroy overwintering pupae.

Home gardeners: Control weeds, grasses, and debris in the vegetable garden that provide cover; hand-pick cutworm larvae, using a flashlight to find them, if practical. Scratch the soil at the base of plants to find larvae in the daytime.

Management-chemical control: HOME USE

Apply any one of these materials to the soil surface at first sign of cutworm activity. Consult label. Minimum preharvest interval (PHI) varies with crop. Difficult to control. Where cutworms are on the soil surface, a carbaryl drench (when bees are not present) may help

  • acetamiprid
  • azadirachtin (neem oil)-Some formulations are OMRI-listed for organic use.
  • Bacillus thuringiensis var. kurstaki (Btk)-Some formulations are OMRI-listed for organic use.
  • carbaryl
  • cyfluthrin
  • permethrin
  • plant-derived essential oils (rosemary, peppermint etc.)-These have some efficacy against lepidopteran larvae. Some formulations are OMRI-listed for organic use.
  • pyrethrins-Some formulations are OMRI-listed for organic use.
  • spinosad-Some formulations are OMRI-listed for organic use.
  • zeta-cypermethrin

Management-chemical control: COMMERCIAL USE

  • alpha-cypermethrin (Fastac EC) at 0.014 to 0.025 lb ai/a. PHI 1 day. REI 12 hr. Retreatment interval 7 days. Do not exceed 0.075 lb ai/a per season.
  • Bacillus thuringiensis (Javelin) 0.12 to 1.5 lb/a. PHI 0 days. REI 4 hr. Add an appropriate spreader-sticker to enhance control. Most effective on small larvae. Some formulations are OMRI-listed for organic use.
  • beta-cyfluthrin (Baythroid XL) at 0.007 to 0.025 lb ai/a. PHI 0 days. REI 12 hr. Retreatment interval 7 days. Do not exceed 0.1 lb ai/a per season.
  • bifenthrin (Brigade WSB) at 0.033 to 0.1 lb ai/a. PHI 7 days. REI 12 hr. Do not exceed 0.5 lb ai/a per season. Retreatment interval 7 days.
  • borate complex (Prev-Am Ultra) applied as a 0.4% solution. Spray to complete coverage. REI 12 hr. Retreatment interval 7 days. OMRI-listed for organic use.
  • Burkholderia spp. (Venerate XC) at 1 to 8 quarts/a product. PHI 0 days. REI 4 hr. OMRI-listed for organic use.
  • carbaryl (Sevin 4F) at 1 to 2 lb ai/a. PHI 14 days. REI 12 hr. Limit 5 treatments per year. Do not exceed 6 lb ai/a per crop.
  • chlorantraniliprole (Coragen) at 0.045 to 0.098 lb ai/a as soil, chemigation or foliar treatment. PHI 1 day. REI 4 hr. Do not exceed 0.2 lb ai/a per crop or 0.8 lb ai/a per season. Foliar retreatment interval 3 days; drip 10 days.
  • chlorantraniliprole/thiamethoxam (Voliam Flexi) at 0.1 to 0.175 lb ai/a. PHI 7 days. REI 12 hr. Retreatment interval 7 days. Do not exceed 0.172 lb ai of thiamethoxam or 0.2 lb ai of chlorantraniliprole per acre per growing season.
  • Chromobacterium subtsugae (Grandevo) at 0.3 to 0.9 lb ai/a per 100 gal. PHI 0 days. REI 4 hr. OMRI-listed for organic use.
  • cyantraniliprole (Exirel) at 0.045 to 0.11 lb ai/a. PHI 1 day. REI 12 hr. Retreatment interval 5 days. Do not exceed 0.4 lb ai/a per year.
  • cyclaniliprole (Harvanta 50SL) at 0.036 to 0.054 lb ai/a. REI 4 hr. PHI 1 day. Retreatment interval 5 days. Limit 3 treatments per crop. Do not exceed 0.22 lb ai/a per year. Some restrictions on application timing.
  • cyfluthrin (Tombstone) at 0.013 to 0.05 lb ai/a. PHI 0 days. REI 12 hr. Do not exceed 0.2 lb ai/a per season. Retreatment interval 7 days.
  • emamectin benzoate (Proclaim) at 0.008 to 0.015 lb ai/a. PHI 7 days. REI 12 hr. Do not exceed 0.09 lb ai/a per season. Retreatment interval 7 days. Do not graze.
  • GS-omega/kappa-Hxtx-Hv1a (Spear Biological Insecticide) at 0.8 lb ai/a. PHI 0 days. REI 4 hr. Do not exceed 2 lb ai/a per year.
  • indoxacarb (Avaunt) at 0.065 lb ai/a. PHI 3 days. REI 12 hr. Retreatment interval 3 days. Do not exceed 0.26 lb ai/a per crop. Limit 4 treatments.
  • methomyl (Lannate SP) at 0.45 to 0.9 lb ai/a. PHI 10 days. REI 48 hr. Do not exceed 8 applications or 3.6 lb ai/a per year.
  • methoxyfenozide (Intrepid 2F) at 0.06 to 0.12 lb ai/a for early-season application and 0.12 to 0.16 lb ai/a for mid- to late-season application or heavy infestation. PHI 1 day. REI 4 hr. Adding a spreader-sticker improves performance. Do not exceed 1 lb ai/a per season.
  • naled (Dibrom 8E) at up to 0.94 lb ai/a. PHI 2 days. REI 48 hr. Do not exceed 6.6 lb ai/a per season. Retreatment interval 7 days. Do not apply when temperature is over 90°F. Limit 7 treatments per season.
  • permethrin (Ambush 25WP, Pounce 25WP) at 0.05 to 0.2 lb ai/a. PHI 1 day. REI 12 hr. Do not graze or feed. Do not exceed 1 lb ai/a per season. Retreatment interval 7 days.
  • permethrin (Loveland Permethrin Cutworm Bait) at 0.1 to 0.2 lb ai/a. PHI 1 day. REI 12 hr. Do not graze of feed. Do not exceed 0.2 lb ai/a per season. Retreatment interval 7 days.
  • spinetoram (Radiant SC) at 0.039 to 0.078 lb ai/a. PHI 1 day. REI 4 hr. Retreatment interval 4 days. Do not exceed six applications or 0.266 lb ai/a per season. Do not apply to seedling leafy vegetables grown for transplant within a greenhouse, shade house, or field plot. Armyworms and cabbage looper only.
  • spinosad (Success, Entrust SC) at 0.047 to 0.125 lb ai/a. PHI 1 day. REI 4 hr. Do not exceed six applications or 0.45 lb ai/a per crop. Entrust SC is OMRI-listed for organic use.
  • tebufenozide (Confirm 2F) at 0.09 to 0.12 lb ai/a early-year; 0.12 lb ai/a mid- to late-year. PHI 7 days. REI 4 hr. Do not exceed 0.625 lb ai/a per crop cycle. Retreatment interval 10 days. A surfactant improves control.
  • thiamethoxam/chlorantraniliprole (Durivo) at 0.196 to 0.257 lb ai/a applied to the soil. PHI 30 days. REI 12 hr. Do not exceed 0.172 lb ai of thiamethoxam or 0.2 lb ai of chlorantraniliprole per acre per growing season.
  • zeta-cypermethrin (Mustang) at 0.028 to 0.05 lb ai/a. PHI 1 day. REI 12 hr. Retreatment interval 7 days. Do not exceed 0.3 lb ai/a per season.

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