Irrigation and fertilization effects on Nantucket Pine Tip Moth (Lepidoptera: Tortricidae) damage levels and pupal weight in an intensively-managed pine plantation
The widespread application of intensive forest management practices throughout the southeastern U.S. has increased loblolly pine, pinus taeda L., yields and shortened conventional rotation lengths. Fluctuations in Nantucket pine tip moth, Rhyacionia frustrana (Comstock), population density and subsequent damage levels have been linked to variations in management intensity. We examined the effects of two practices, irrigation and fertilization, on R. frustrana damage levels and pupal weights in an intensively-managed P. taeda plantation in South Carolina. Trees received intensive weed control and one of the following treatments: irrigation only, fertilization only, irrigation + fertilization, or control. Mean whole-tree tip moth damage levels ranged from R. frustrana on this experiment.