Plant Pest Handbook Introduction

Plant Pest Handbook Introduction

We are extremely pleased and proud to present, on-line, the new and updated version of the Connecticut Agricultural Experiment Station’s Plant Pest Handbook as part of our Home Page.

The Station published its first report on effective and practical means of controlling plant diseases in 1889. In the many decades that followed, Station scientists published hundreds of scientific reports on the biology and ecology and on the chemical, natural, and integrated pest management (IPM) of diseases, insects, mites, and nematodes of Connecticut crops and plants. This great wealth of information was initially summarized in the Station’s first Plant Pest Handbook published in two volumes in 1933 and 1934. The Plant Pest Handbook was last published in 1956. This publication was always a popular source of information for farmers and homeowners.

This electronic version of the Plant Pest Handbook has been a most ambitious task, but one that we believe will be of immense benefit to Connecticut citizens. By placing this publication on-line, we will be able to continuously update it by adding new information and deleting out-dated information. Citizens in all parts of Connecticut will have instant access at any time to needed information on a particular pest infesting their crop, garden, lawn, tree, shrub, or house-plant. In many instances, a mere click of the mouse will bring more comprehensive coverage of a subject.

Should you need to contact a Station scientist, you may visit our New Haven or Windsor locations, correspond through regular mail or e-mail, or call us at our New Haven or Windsor offices. Phone Numbers.  A toll free number can be dialed in Connecticut to reach Station scientists in New Haven (1-877-855-2237). Experiment Station scientists are ready to answer questions from 8:30 AM to 4:30 PM Monday through Friday, except State Holidays.

Station plant pathologist Sharon M. Douglas and entomologist Richard Cowles undertook the enormous task of editing the Handbook. Additional staff that contributed to the Handbook were plant pathologists Sandra L. Anagnostakis, Donald E. Aylor, Wade H. Elmer, Francis J. Ferrandino, James A. La Mondia, and Victoria L. Smith. Contributing entomologists were Timothy Abbey, Rose Hiskes, Chris T. Maier, Mark S. McClure, Kimberly A. Stoner, Kenneth A. Welch, and Ronald M. Weseloh.

Strategies useful in the management of plant diseases and insect pests are highlighted in the first two section. These sections are relatively short and are entitled "Plant Health Problems" and "Insects and Their Injuries to Plants". The "Heart" of the Handbook is found in the third and final section entitled "Search By Host Plant". Plants are arranged alphabetically by common name in this chapter. After finding the plant of interest, click, and you are instantly brought to information on the disease, nematode, growth, insect, and mite problems known in Connecticut for that particular plant species. Plant health problems are arranged by importance for each pathogen type (fungus, bacterium, phytoplasma, virus, nematode, and physiological/environmental problem). Insect problems are arranged alphabetically.

We are most interested in hearing from you as to how we can improve the Handbook. Your comments can be sent to Dr. Sharon Douglas at or to Dr. Richard Cowles at   All correspondence will be acknowledged.

John F. Anderson