Cannabis pest complex in Ontario, Canada, and the use of companion crops in outdoor cannabis production

With the recent legalization of recreational cannabis in Canada, cultivation of cannabis sativa has increased significantly, including rapid adoption of outdoor cultivation. Given the cheaper cost of production compared to indoor cultivation, the growth in outdoor cultivation will likely outpace that of indoor. However, while outdoor cannabis cultivation faces many of the same pest challenges as indoor cultivation, there are no pesticides registered for outdoor cannabis. Growers must rely on other integrated pest management (IPM) tactics to manage pests. Conservation biological control involves modifying the landscape to promote beneficial insect and repel pests. We will evaluate the effectiveness of various companion plants such as marigold, sunflowers, and aromatic herbs to attract beneficials and repel pests. Developing an understanding of the insect diversity associated with outdoor cannabis and how companion crops affect these insects would allow growers to make more informed and sustainable IPM decisions given the lack of registered insecticides.

Faculty Supervisor:

Cynthia Scott-Dupree


Lillian Auty


JC Green Cannabis Company


Environmental sciences




University of Guelph


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