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Lumiderm®: The First Ever Canola Seed Applied Product That Controls Cutworm

Cutworm feeding damage is shown as bare spots, holes or notches in foliage.

One of the biggest challenges for canola growers is how to get their crop established and growing vigorously in the face of early-season cutworm pressure.

Cutworms will feed on all parts of the plant and can take out a significant portion of a crop in just a few days. A second challenge comes from cutworms’ feeding habits.  They normally feed at night and then go underground during the day. This makes them very difficult to scout.

For growers, the stakes are high. This has led growers to look for new solutions for this growing problem. Until now, as this case study will demonstrate, growers have not had an effective seed treatment option to control cutworms in canola. That’s why the 2013 registration of new DuPont™ Lumiderm® insecticide seed treatment is such a significant development for canola production in Western Canada.

Lumiderm® is the first-ever canola seed treatment that controls cutworms and provides improved consistency of flea beetle control across a broad range of environmental conditions. Lumiderm® contains the new active ingredient cyantraniliprole. It’s a Group 28 insecticide, a new class of chemistry that delivers excellent seed safety and fits well with IPM programs.

Research: Lumiderm® vs. standard seed treatment.

How well does Lumiderm® protect a canola crop from cutworm? This greenhouse trial tells the story. In this study, 24 canola plants were grown in two container trays. One tray was grown from seed treated with a standard treatment. The other tray of canola was grown from seed treated with new Lumiderm®.

2 Days After Infestation

Almost immediately after infestation, the plants with only the standard seen treatment exhibit severe cutworm damage.

6 Days After Infestation

At 6 days post infestation, none of the plants with the standard treatment have survived, while the majority of Lumiderm™ treated plants are still present and growing strong.

Normalized Difference Vegetation Index

NDVI imaging indicates 20 percent more vegetation in the lighter section, which was treated with new Lumiderm™

At the cotyledon stage, 12 cutworm larvae were added to the center of each tray. Based on the number of larvae, and the size of the trays, this is about 25 to 30 times the economic threshold specified by the Canola Council of Canada. In other words, this is far beyond the worst cutworm pressure a grower could ever conceivably face.

What happened? Almost immediately, the cutworms began doing severe damage to the canola with the standard seed treatment. At Day 2, these canola plants were severely damaged. By Day 2, there was nothing left.

Despite this off-the-charts cutworm pressure, most of the Lumiderm® treated plants just kept growing. You’ll never face cutworm pressure like this, but it’s good to know new Lumiderm® insecticide seed treatment is up to the challenge.

Agronomy: Lumiderm® vs. standard seed treatment. In the summer of 2013, agronomist Lisa Anderson conducted several trials comparing canola treated with Lumiderm® to canola with a standard insecticide seed treatment. 

One field, located near Mannville, Alta., had a history of cutworm damage, so Anderson was anxious to see how Lumiderm® handled significant cutworm pressure. 

“The Lumiderm®-treated crop was a much healthier stand compared to the check that didn’t get the Lumiderm®,” says Anderson. “It was at least a half-leaf to a full-leaf stage ahead. We walked to the middle of the crop and there was relatively no cutworm or flea beetle damage, compared to the check. We only found the odd cutworm. They might take a nibble, but they were not actively feeding. They just weren’t that interested in the plant.”

June 24, 2013: aerial photography highlights Lumiderm® performance

Using a standard insecticide seed treatment might make you think you have cutworm control covered. It’s not until you compare a standard treatment with Lumiderm® that you understand what you’re missing.

This aerial imagery analysis was completed by Point Forward Solutions Inc. and JZAerial, with a  drone camera on June 24, 2013. Using infrared technology, the camera can detect differences in vigour and biomass between canola that had the standard seed treatment (darker areas) and canola protected by Lumiderm® (lighter areas). The dark areas indicate less vegetation or biomass – in other words, a less-than-ideally established canola crop. The lighter areas show that the Lumiderm®- treated crop has greater plant density and health – in fact, about 20% more vegetation than the standard-treated crop.

“Lumiderm®-treated seed provides growers with peace of mind during the critical stages of seedling growth, by enhancing early-season stand establishment and crop vigour,” says Lisa Power, Seed Treatment Manager with DuPont Crop Protection. “If cutworm is a concern at all, we highly recommend that you protect your canola seed investment by asking for Lumiderm® seed treatment.”

As with all crop protection products, read and follow label instructions carefully. DuPont™ Lumiderm™ is a DuPont™ Lumigen™ seed sense product. The DuPont Oval Logo, DuPont™, The miracles of science™, Lumiderm™ and Lumigen™ are registered trademarks or trademarks of E. I. du Pont de Nemours and Company. E. I. du Pont Canada Company is a licensee. Member of CropLife Canada. © Copyright 2013 E. I. du Pont Canada Company. All rights reserved.