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Case Study: Tom Dodd Nursery

High-quality products produce high-quality plants

How Ventigra® Insecticide offers an effective, alternative approach to controlling scale insects in nursery crops.

Tom Dodd Nurseries, Inc. is a century-old nursery located in southwestern Alabama, which has grown to include almost 300 acres of ornamentals, grasses, groundcovers and perennials. The nursery employs a team of dedicated professionals with 200 years of combined experience.

 

Flint Johnson is the production manager at the nursery and has over 30 years of industry experience himself. He oversees the production of various crops, including trees, flowering shrubs and perennials, and ensures the plants are getting the proper care and treatment they need to grow and thrive. This includes teaching and managing other production employees to do the same.

 

A large part of keeping these plants in good health is being proactive in combating insect pests, and scouting is one of the key ways to do that. “We all have a different role and our goal is to play that role to the best of our abilities for Tom Dodd Nursery. Everybody does their part. You see something, you say something. That’s what we try to do — catch stuff as early as possible,” said Flint.

 

One of the biggest problems that the nursery has had in the past is scale insects — a destructive pest that targets the leaves and stems of the plant and causes sooty mold, which interrupts the growth cycle by inhibiting photosynthesis. Plants with damage from scale insects are no longer marketable and must be trimmed and regrown. For Flint and the nursery, Ventigra insecticide from BASF has been a groundbreaking addition to integrated pest management.

 

“I would say (scale) probably covered 60% of crop head issues, and with Ventigra, we cut it down to less than 10%. That was just outstanding for me and for us. Everyone else is spraying harsh chemicals. Ventigra is one of the reasons we don’t. We can spray a whole lot less and go 28-30 days without having to spray a crop. That’s unheard of this time of year,” said Flint.

 

Flint stresses that while Ventigra insecticide allows for less spraying, it’s still important to rotate the product with other chemistries to prevent resistance issues in the future. “We want Ventigra to be around for a long time. It’s great. The labor savings, the time saved — in general, I praise it because it works,” said Flint.

 

Ventigra insecticide is an essential tool for nurseries because it not only allows better control of pests, but offers a sustainable solution that works in harmony with beneficial insects as well. With Ventigra insecticide and other BASF solutions in the grower’s toolbox, plants will remain beautiful and healthy from start to finish.

"We want Ventigra to be around for a long time. It's great. The labor savings, the time saved - in general, I praise it because it works."


- Flint Johnson, Production Manager, Tom Dodd Nursery

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Ventigra® Insecticide

Ventigra insecticide gives growers an effective tool that controls piercing-sucking insects with powerful precision while allowing beneficials to thrive

 

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