The study was conducted in the farming communities of Akure North and South Local Government Areas of Ondo State, Nigeria using pre-tested questionnaire/interview schedule, Key Informant Interview (KII), Focus Group Discussions (FGDs) and observation technique to generate data on: the types of vegetables grown, the major pest species, farmers control method in the field with emphasis on plant-based formulations and farmers’ perceived efficacy of the plant botanical formulation on field crop pests. The data were analysed and results presented with descriptive statistics. Results indicate that Telferia occidentale (Ugwu) ranked first among vegetable grown for food (85%) and income generation followed by Amaranthus hybridus (African spinach) and Okra in that order. The major field pests identified were leaf borers (Dysdercus superstitiosus), webbers (Sylepta derogate), leaf hoppers (Zonocerus variegatus), sting bug (Aspavia armigera), weevils, leaf caterpillar (Psara bipunctalis) and flea beetles (Podagrica spp.). The most prominent among the materials used in the preparation of some of the identified botanical formulations are Azadirachta indica (Neem) leaves, Piper guineense (Black pepper), and Nicotiana tobaccum (tobacco). These plants were combined together in the preparation of botanical formulations to prevent and/or control pest in the field. It was ascertained from our FGDs that 75.8% of the farmers were of the opinion that indigenous control methods were as effective as synthetic pesticides. Vegetable farmers in the study area were found to create habitat for insect/bird predators as insect pest control strategy. It is evident from the result that the critical challenge of almost all the farmers was inability to estimate what proportion the ingredients used in plant-based formulations should be combined. As a result, standardized techniques of preparation, bio-safety and environmental guideline for efficacy should form important consideration in formulating botanicals for pest control methods.
Key words: Indigenous knowledge, vegetables, insect pests, botanical formulations, farmers.