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10 February 2019 Documenting Potential Sunn Hemp (Crotalaria juncea L.) (Fabaceae) Pollinators in Florida
Robert L. Meagher, Kristal M. Watrous, Shelby J. Fleischer, Rodney N. Nagoshi, James T. Brown, Kristen Bowers, Neil Miller, Stephen D. Hight, Jesusa C. Legaspi, John K. Westbrook
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Abstract

Sunn hemp, Crotalaria juncea L., is a warm-season legume that can be planted in rotation to cash crops to add nitrogen and organic matter to the soils, for weed growth prevention, and to suppress nematode populations. Sunn hemp flowers also provide nectar and pollen for pollinators and enhance biological control by furnishing habitat for natural enemies. Experiments were conducted in Northern and North Central Florida to evaluate bee populations that visited flowers within mixed plots of sunn hemp and sorghum-sudangrass and plots of two sunn hemp germplasm lines. Collections of bees that visited ‘AU Golden’ and Tillage Sunn flowers indicated that Xylocopa virginica (L.) (Hymenoptera: Apidae), Xylocopa micans Lepeletier (Hymenoptera: Apidae), Megachile sculpturalis Smith (Hymenoptera: Megachilidae), Megachile mendica (Cresson) (Hymenoptera: Megachilidae), and Megachile georgica Cresson (Hymenoptera: Megachilidae) were present in large numbers in May through July and then again in October. AlthoughTillage Sunn seeds planted in March flowered in May, percent bloom and number of bee visits were low. Compared with short day sunn hemp cultivars, ‘AU Golden’ plants produced flowers early in the season to provide food and habitat for pollinators and have the potential to produce an abundant seed crop in Northern and North Central Florida.

Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Entomological Society of America 2019. This work is written by (a) US Government employee(s) and is in the public domain in the US.
Robert L. Meagher, Kristal M. Watrous, Shelby J. Fleischer, Rodney N. Nagoshi, James T. Brown, Kristen Bowers, Neil Miller, Stephen D. Hight, Jesusa C. Legaspi, and John K. Westbrook "Documenting Potential Sunn Hemp (Crotalaria juncea L.) (Fabaceae) Pollinators in Florida," Environmental Entomology 48(2), 343-350, (10 February 2019). https://doi.org/10.1093/ee/nvy190
Received: 13 September 2018; Accepted: 7 December 2018; Published: 10 February 2019
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KEYWORDS
cover crops
Crotalaria
pollinators
sunn hemp
Xylocopa
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