Fungus-Based Insecticides - Green Thumb Education Series
Fungi have been assisting humanity in many ways for eons. They are essential in the decomposition process, as well as in farming, fermentation, medications and as food. Now, fungi may be able to help us control pests as a natural insecticide. Join Clallam County Master Gardener Muriel Nesbitt for the Green Thumb Education Series presentation “Fungus-Based Insecticides” to learn more about the potential for these fabulous fungi-based pest killers. Traditional synthetic pesticides may not be right for every situation, and some are overused so much that pests are becoming more resistant to them. Biopesticides—or fungi that kill pests—will be discussed as a potential alternative to these traditional pesticides. The discussion will help provide some gardeners with an additional tool for controlling insect pests. “I have not yet used such insecticides but became interested in the topic due to observing fungus-killed insects in the garden, and being fascinated by the ability of some fungi to control the behavior of insects,” Muriel said. Muriel will discuss how fungus-based pesticides work using their individualized “chemical weapons,” and their potential benefits to gardeners, farmers, and homeowners. In addition, she will offer insights into the difficulties of making such insecticides. Muriel began her career as a high school teacher in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. She went on to become a graduate student at the University of Washington where she earned a Ph.D. in genetics. Muriel was a professor of biology at University of California, Los Angeles for two years and then taught biology at University of California, San Diego for 35 years before retiring to Port Angeles in 2008. The Green Thumb Education Series presentation “Fungus-Based Insecticides” will be held in person on Thursday, February 9th from noon – 1:00 p.m. at the Port Angeles Food Bank at 632 N Oakridge Drive in Port Angeles. Or you may join via Zoom from PC, Mac, Linux, iOS or Android: https://wsu.zoom.us/j/93629898830?pwd=UnRkYjdwSGNmTnA4Y2hxVFBuRHVkZz09 Meeting ID: 936 2989 8830 Passcode: 676224 Or join by phone: 253-215-8782 The Green Thumb Education Series, sponsored by the Washington State University Clallam County Master Gardeners, is held on the second and fourth Thursday of each month through October. In November, December, and January, one lecture is offered. Scheduled presentations are subject to change. Visit the WSU Extension Clallam County website calendar for the latest information on upcoming presentations. For questions, call 360-565-2679.