Contribution of Surrounding Flowering Plants to Reduce Abundance of Aphis nerii (Hemiptera: Aphididae) on Oleanders (Nerium oleander L.)

dc.contributor.authorMadeira, Filipe
dc.contributor.authorLumbierres, Belén
dc.contributor.authorPons i Domènech, Xavier
dc.description.abstractOleander is very frequently planted as an ornamental shrub in urban areas of the Mediterranean. Its most common pest is the aphid Aphis nerii, and heavy infestations produce aesthetic damage and disturbances to the citizens, and they are frequently sprayed with insecticides in order to reduce the population density. One alternative method is conservation biological control which is enhanced by the provisioning of alternative food, refuges, and reproduction sites. In this study, the usefulness of four flowering service plants (Lobularia maritima, Calendula officinalis, Coreopsis grandiflora, and Achillea millefolium) is evaluated for aphid infestation levels and aphid natural enemy abundances. Aphid levels were consistently lower in oleander plots surrounded by service plants. Natural enemy abundances tended to be higher in plots surrounded by service plants, but significant differences could not be found until the fourth year of the study, when more lacewings, total predators, and mummies were higher in plots surrounded by service plants. On these plots, hoverflies, ladybeetles, and lacewings were the most common predators. Paragus sp. and Hippodamia variegata were the prevalent hoverfly and ladybeetle species, respectively. The potential toxicity effect on the prevalence of natural enemy species is discussed. On service plants, significantly more hoverflies were recorded on L. maritima than on C. officinalis and C. grandiflora, and more true bugs were recorded on C. officinalis and A. millefolium than on L. maritima or C. grandiflora. Our results suggest that planting service plants (such as sweet alyssum, marigold, or yarrow) surrounding oleanders can improve conservation biological control by enhancing the abundance of aphid natural enemies and thus a reduction of the abundance of A. nerii.ca_ES
dc.description.sponsorshipThis research did not receive any specific grant from funding agencies in the public, commercial, or not-for-profit sectors. F.M. thanks the national funding by the FCT—the Foundation for Science and Technology—through the institutional scientific employment program contract. The authors are grateful to the Foundation for Science and Technology (FCT, Portugal) for their financial support through national funds, FCT/MCTES (PIDDAC) to CIMO (UIDB/00690/2020 and UIDP/00690/2020) and SusTEC (LA/P/0007/2020). B.L. was funded by the project UdL-Impuls (the University of Lleida and Bank of Santander) X10020.ca_ES
dc.relation.isformatofReproducció del document publicat a
dc.relation.ispartofHorticulturae, 2022, vol. 8, núm. 11, p. 1-14ca_ES
dc.rightscc-by (c) Madeira et al., 2022ca_ES
dc.subjectAphid natural enemiesca_ES
dc.subjectConservation biological controlca_ES
dc.subjectHippodamia variegataca_ES
dc.subjectParagus spca_ES
dc.subjectUrban green areasca_ES
dc.subjectService plantsca_ES
dc.subject.otherJardineria urbanaca_ES
dc.titleContribution of Surrounding Flowering Plants to Reduce Abundance of Aphis nerii (Hemiptera: Aphididae) on Oleanders (Nerium oleander L.)ca_ES
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