Mainspring, a new fast-acting insecticide, is now available in the UK as a welcome addition to the ornamental horticulture market’s integrated pest management [IPM] programme.
ICL Professional Horticulture is marketing and distributing this much-anticipated product, which is approved for use on protected ornamental crops for the control of western flower thrip (WFT) (Frankliniella occidentalis) and two types of caterpillars: golden twin-spot moth/tomato looper (Chrysodeixis chalcites) and beet armyworm/small mottled willow moth (Spodoptera exigua).
Sam Rivers, ICl’s technical manager for controls, says: “The chemical portfolio we have in this country is really dwindling, and so Mainspring can be a really crucial product for growers’ IPM toolbox.”
He added that ICL’s digital, web-based Plant Health Planner is a handy tool that will help ensure that Mainspring is correctly applied and incorporated into growers’ IPM plans.
He said: “We’ve got a wonderful product here with Mainspring and we want to make sure that it’s working as well as it should be.”
Developed by Syngenta Professional Solutions, Mainspring is most effective when it is applied when the pests are in their first or second instar. It’s active ingredient (AI), cyantraniliprole, affects the insects’ muscles and nerves, causing the pests to stop feeding quickly after ingestion.
Marcel Hubers, Syngenta’s EAME technical manager, ornamentals and garden control, says: “This is a very interesting and unique insecticide product for ornamentals. It’s a translaminar product, which can be improved with the right adjuvant, with very good residual effect. The insects are affected by ingestion and less by contact activity, which makes it a very good contribution to an IPM programme and also in a registration management programme because the AI is unique for this crop group.”
He adds: “There is no cross-resistance with other [pesticide] groups as far as we know, and it’s fast acting – although it takes a few days before the insect will die – and it has rapid feeding cessation.”
“Although it’s a broad-spectrum product, for most of the beneficials we are using in ornamentals its completely safe.”
When used for WFT control, Mainspring should always be mixed with liquid sugar. The pesticide (which is sold in an easy-to-use, soluble granule (WG) formulation) has good tank mix compatibility as well as flexible use with adjuvants, including ElastoG5.