SLU news

New project to stop cabbage root fly

Published: 22 March 2013

Researchers will identify, study, and demonstrate methods to keep cabbage root fly away from commercial cultivation of turnips. Larvae of the cabbage root fly can cause large damage, leading to costly additional work and discarded turnips.

The goal is that Swedish growers will continue to be competitive producers of good quality turnips. The researchers will study which known methods that could be used as well as new practices from other parts of Europe.

The project includes a literature review, meetings with international experts and a study trip to England and Scotland, where a lot of turnip is grown. In Scotland and England growers cover their cultivations with nets after sowing. The nets are left until harvest and supplemented with other measurements against weeds and other pests.

– We need a better understanding of how much time is spent and the pest effect experienced during the production time when nets are used. Therefore, we will make a large-scale demonstration experiment in an existing cultivation, says Christina Marmolin at the Rural Economy and Agricultural Society of Skaraborg.

Commercially viable turnips must meet quality standards with stringent minimum requirements. That means that infested turnips must be trimmed manually to be sold.