Mobile app puts pest and plant disease information right in your hand

PRINCETON, Ky., — Green industry professionals often find themselves in the field needing immediate access to pest and plant disease information and plant care recommendations. Or they need to be alerted when destructive pests emerge in their areas.

Thanks to a collaborative effort of horticulturists, entomologists and plant pathologists at seven land-grant universities, now there’s an app for that.

IPM app

Winston Dunwell, a University of Kentucky horticulture professor at the College of Agriculture’s Research and Education Center in Princeton, worked with professionals from the University of Tennessee Institute of Agriculture, Clemson, North Carolina State University, University of Georgia, University of Maryland and Virginia Polytechnic Institute to develop the first integrated pest management mobile app for nursery growers, landscapers, arborists, extension agents and students that includes the major horticultural practices and disease and insect recommendations.

IPMPro will streamline pest management decision-making and employee training and will make complying with state pesticide recordkeeping regulations easy.

The mobile app is available for iPhone, iPad and Android. IPMPro is $24.99 and is available through Apple and Android marketplaces.

Experts on the go

With cooperation from growers and landscapers, horticulture and pest management experts built IPMPro for U.S. Department of Agriculture Plant Hardiness Zones four through eight.

“Nursery and landscape professionals conduct business on the go; they truly have a mobile office — often their truck,” said Amy Fulcher, lead developer and UT Institute of Agriculture plant scientist. “IPMPro dramatically simplifies day-to-day plant care and pest control decision-making in the field.

“It provides a library of information in the convenience of an app, and features real-time alerts to help professionals stay on top of emerging pests and timely plant care.”

Features

The user can:

Receive text-like alerts for time-sensitive pest issues and plant care — adjusted to location;

Consult images, lifecycle and management options for major pests of woody plants;

Reference how-to information and images of cultural practices;

Obtain pesticide recommendations for major diseases and insects;

Utilize built-in pesticide recordkeeping for documentation while outdoors;

Track pests and cultural practices in calendar view or a chronological list;

Assist in educating new employees and experienced professionals.

This is the first application of its kind developed in the United States. It was made possible through funding by the UT Institute of Agriculture through its Extension and AgResearch units and in cooperation with the UT Research Foundation.

For more information on the application, visit www.IPMProApp.com.

Developers are currently working on a similar app for homeowners called IPMLite.

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