Your Resident Detrimental Pests
Are you having problems on your organic garden regarding the pests that are continuously chewing on your precious organic herbs, vegetables and fruits? These pests will surely give you a throbbing headache. They will eat your yields nonstop eventually killing your organic plants. This is a very serious problem. If you want to get rid of these unwanted pests, you need to learn more about them. Information about these pests is very important. Knowledge about them will serve as your weapon against them. If you would like to learn more about these destructive pests, then, continue to read on….
Aphids are minute, soft and pear shaped pests. They are 1/16 or 3/8 inches long and even with this length, they can cause a huge problem. They have these antennae which are long and two tube like projection from their abdomen. There are different species of aphids and they come in various colors such as powdery gray, pinkish, greenish, yellowish and black.
Aphids are widespread in North America. They just love having their way and feeding on most of your vegetables, fruits, flowers, ornamentals and even your shady trees! How thick could these aphids get?
These aphids have a very active reproduction. They reproduce nonstop causing now their large population. Imagine, females can reproduce even without mating. Female aphids will continuously produce baby aphids called nymphs. At a span of 1 to 2 weeks, these newborn aphids will develop and grow into mature aphids. They themselves can reproduce more aphids.
During the fall, male and female aphids will mate. After mating, the female will leave the eggs on the crevices of barks of trees and plants and also to the stems. During the winter, the eggs will lie still and during the spring, those who survived the harsh winter will emerge. However, in places where it is conducive for aphids to reproduce, such as those with mild climates, aphids tend to reproduce all year.
Both the adult aphids and the baby aphids known as nymphs suck the sap of the plants. That is why they are truly hard working. Sucking the sap of the plants would cause the distorted appearance of the buds, flowers, stems and leaves of your organic plants. It also makes your organic plants yellowish, a sign that your plants are dying. This activity would leave the plant deprived from the needed nutrients. Aside from that, they produce a sticky fluid that would immediately be stuck on the leaves. This fluid will allow the growth of mold which resembles the color of soot. This will block the rays of the sun and may cause the wilting of your organic plants. Remember that the sun is essential for your plants. Aside from that, aphids are known to host microorganisms that can be transferred to your plants and may cause plant diseases.
Caterpillars are usually dark colored with some yellow or brown stripes. Some may also have bluish dots on the body. Some are even green in color. Generally, caterpillars are 2 to 2.5 inches long. They have this capsule hard head which is the hardest part in their fleshy and gooey body. They have 6 legs in front and 4 more legs on their rear parts. Caterpillars have different species.
Some caterpillars usually feed on fruits such as the codling moth and budworms. This type is a bit difficult to get rid of than the other species who feeds on leaves. The species which feeds on foliage are typically seen in your garden. Caterpillars mostly feed on your shady trees, leafy vegetables and plants as well as your ornamentals.
The spring is a mark for the eggs containing caterpillars to hatch. The nest two months will be the time where the larva will eat its way through your garden. They will continue eating to develop and mature and at night, they will go back to the tree where they live in and continue to spin their “tent.” Making a larger tent is important to have a place where it can house their emerging body size.
At late June or early July, the caterpillars will have reached their maximum growth and will leave their tents behind. They will then go to a comfortable place like your home and start spinning their cocoons. After having a safe refuge, they will undergo metamorphosis for 2 to 4 weeks. Then, they will emerge as adults; they will find a mate and reproduce. The female will find the best spot to lay her eggs. After finding the best spot, she will lay approximately 200 to 300 eggs. Adults will die on the middle of summer time. The next spring would mark again the start of the lifecycle of caterpillars.
Most caterpillars work by eating the foliage of your plants. There will be no immediate damage seen but as time passes by, you will observe that your plants are getting bare. The foliage of your plants is very important for photosynthesis and will not live and continue to grow without having leaves. Aside from that, your plants need the nutrients and strength to build new leaves, making it very vulnerable to plant diseases. It is then imperative for you to get rid of these caterpillars. Some species of caterpillars also feed from the fruits of your plants such as tomatoes and other fruit bearing plants. This will surely leave holes and make your crops inedible.
Cabbage maggots are white tapering unsightly maggots.They have bristly hairs covering them. They are approximately 1/3 inch long. Cabbage maggots are good at burrowing in the soil and eating through the roots of the affected plants.The adult cabbage maggots known as cabbage loopers are ¼ inch in size usually grayish or brownish in color and looks like your typical housefly.
Cabbage maggots live off from the roots of cabbage and mustard family such as cabbage, cauliflower, horseradish. Brussels sprouts, Chinese cabbage, kale, turnips and broccoli. Cabbage maggots are found throughout North America, Europe and Canada.
Cabbage maggots loves cold climate. Over the winter, the pupa will remain cocooned 1 to 5 inches deep in the soil. In late March, adult cabbage maggots will lay eggs on plant stems and cracks and crevices on your garden soil line.These eggs will hatch in 3 to 7 days into tiny, whitish and legless maggots which burrows into the soil to feed on the roots of your plants. Then, after again another 3 weeks of growth and development, the maggot will form a puparium coming from its skin. It will again take another 12 to 18 days to produce another fly. The generations can be indefinite but it is said that maggots produces three to four times a year.
Cabbage maggots live off the roots of your plants. The effects of this will go on unnoticed however; your plants will surely have a stunted growth. On some occasions, your plants will wilt in the middle of a hot day. This will happen because the roots is used to absorb water and nutrients from the soil, and since cabbage maggots feed off the roots of your plants, your plants may eventually die. Aside from that, your plants will turn sickly and the leaves will turn yellow.It is rare that the plants will survive because cabbage maggots boring on roots will also cause wounds. Viruses can enter through this wounds and cause diseases to your plants. The effects of cabbage maggots are clearly devastating.
Describing Colorado potato beetle:
Colorado potato beetle is considered as the biggest cause of pest problems in potato growers in potato farms and organic gardens. The adults are generally yellow orange in color and have that signature 10 black stripes on their wings. These adult Colorado potato beetle are generally 1/3 inch in length while the larvae are usually 1/16 to ½ inch in length. The larvae are orange in color grubs with black dots on its rear parts. The eggs are yellowish to orange in color and are laid in clusters and upright position.
Host / Range Colorado potato beetles:
Colorado potato beetles generally favor potatoes, but they would also love to have a taste of your tomatoes, eggplants, peppers, tobacco, ground cherry, cabbage crops and petunias. Colorado potato beetles can be found throughout Northern America except in some parts of Nevada, Florida, Eastern Canada and California.
The Life cycle of Colorado potato beetles:
The life cycle of Colorado potato beetles depends on where these pests are located. In farther south of Maine, these pests completes up to three generations in a year. While in north Maine, these pests complete one generation in a year. The adult Colorado potato beetles will burrow and seem to hibernate 12 to 18 inches on the soil over the winter months. Then, the adults will go up to the ground and launch themselves on a plant and they will mate. Crowds of eggs will be laid by female eggs on the undersides of leaves. Females lay their eggs in batches laying up to 25 eggs in a batch. Female Colorado potato beetles can lay up to 500 eggs each, because of this, these pests are known to be extraordinarily great in reproducing.
How do Colorado potato beetles damage your garden?
Colorado potato beetles are especially fond of leaves and stems. Larvae are especially voracious. These pests will defoliate your plants leaving you with bare garden. They will also chew the yields of your tomatoes and eggplants. The younger plants rarely survive while the older plants are extremely defoliated. The yield of your plants will be severely reduced because of Colorado potato beetles.
Cutworms are generally 1 inch to 2 inches in length. Some are brownish while others are grayish in color. Some have stripes while other has dots on their bodies. They also have that shiny little head. These caterpillars are nocturnal, meaning they are rarely seen in daylight and prefers the dark during night time. When you disturb them, they will instantly curl into a spherical shape. The adult counterpart of these cutworms are the “Miller’s moth” which is generally not dangerous.
Host / Range of Cutworms:
Cutworms favor your seedlings. They are widespread all throughout Northern America. They are considered as eating machines since they can destroy a field. These cutworms will surely leave holes on the leaves of your plants as well as your vine fruits and even buds.
The Life cycle of Cutworms:
Some cutworms spend their winter as pupae. They also have the ability to overwinter in their partly developed larval stage. In this stage, they are especially destructive from being hungry over their hibernation.
Some other species of cutworms will emerge from their hibernation during the spring. They will then lay their eggs on the ground, particularly on grasses. The eggs will hatch after 7 to 8 days and will feed on the plants growing near their temporary nest. After several weeks of continuous feedings, the larvae will penetrate the soil and hibernate. This cycle will repeat again on the next spring to come.
Some other species of cutworms can survive the harsh winter months and will be able to hatch during the spring. Again, these larvae will feed on the nearby plants especially the seedlings. Then again, they will pupate and will emerge as adults. Generally, all of the species of cutworms only produce one generation of cutworms in a year.
How do cutworms damage your garden?
Cutworms are nocturnal in nature. They will hide under crop debris, clumps of dead grass and weeds. They will find a place where they will be hidden from your reach. They favor the young seedlings and literally decapitate young plants.
Mexican bean beetle is usually mistaken for the lady bug. You should know what a Mexican bean beetle looks like since you may accidentally get rid of lady bugs. Bear in mind that lady bugs are beneficial for your organic garden. The adult Mexican bean beetles are oval in shape and yellowish or brownish in color. Some have that coppery gleam on them. Generally, these beetles are 1/16 inch in length and they have those signature 16 black spots in three rows seen across their wing covers. The larvae are fleshy fat and oval shaped grubs that are yellowish to brownish in color. Larvae are generally 1/8 inch in length with no legs but they have those spiky and bristly branches covering their bodies in segments. The eggs of Mexican bean beetle are also yellowish in color and oval shaped too.
Host / Range of Mexican bean beetles:
Mexican bean beetles love to eat the foliage, pods and stems of snap beans, green beans, Cowpeas, string beans, bush beans, lima beans, soy beans, pinto beans, navy beans, kidney beans and pole beans. The bush varieties are more commonly attacked by these beetles compared to the pole beans variety. These beetles are one of the most common enemies of gardeners in the eastern part of US and some parts of Arizona, Colorado, Texas and Utah. It is also found all throughout North America.
The Lifecycle of Mexican bean beetles:
Mexican bean beetles have one up to four generation reproduction each year. Adults hibernate in the debris found on your garden or in any other safe place over the winter months. They will then emerge from their hibernation when the weather is warmer such as in the middle or in the late spring. These adults will feed for a few weeks. After feeding, the females will lay their oval and yellowish eggs on the undersides of leaves. They will lay their eggs in clusters of 40 to 60 eggs. These eggs will hatch after 1 to 2 weeks. The larvae will feed for the next 14 to 35 days. After the continuous eating of these larvae, they will start to pupate again in the underside of leaves. The adults will emerge from their cases after 7 days and continue the cycle again. The population of Mexican bean beetle is especially abundant in late summer.
How do Mexican bean beetles damage your garden?
Mexican bean beetles especially love the foliage of your plants. These beetles will eat at the underside parts of the leaves. After finishing one leaf, the skeletons and fibers of the leaf will be left having now a lacy like appearance. Since these beetles eat the foliage of your plants, expect that your organic bean garden will be bared with green foliage after their attack. They can also decrease the yields of your organic beans since they also feed on your pods. Aside from that, they eat the stems. The effects of Mexican bean beetles can really be disturbing!
Describing Tarnished Plant Bugs:
Knowing what the tarnished plant bugs look like is the first step you should know in getting rid of these bugs with organic pesticides. The eggs of these bugs are oval in shape and are positioned as such in the tissues of plants as well as grasses. It is 1 mm long and has that creamy color. It flourishes in fruits and can hatch in 7 days. The nymph looks a lot like its adult counterpart. The nymphs are greenish in color; it has black dots on thorax and in between its wing pads and abdomen. The only thing is that, it lacks wings. The adult are flat and oval. They are ¼ inch in length and they are greenish and brownish in color.
Host / Range of Tarnished Plant Bugs:
Tarnished plant bugs are known to be a major pest in Canada, North America, Europe and Asia. These bugs particularly love strawberries, raspberries, peaches, legumes, apples, cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower, celery, snap beans, alfalfa, tobacco and cucumbers. They suck on fruits and leaves while injecting poisonous serum on these plants. They also affect many flowers such as aster, calendula, chrysanthemum, cosmos,dahlia,daisy, gladiolus, poppy, salvia, sunflower, verbena, zinnia, and many more.
The Life Cycle of Tarnished Plant Bugs:
Adult tarnished plant bugs will overwinter on garden debris such as leaf litter and plant debris. Female adults will lay their eggs on grasses, weeds with broad leaves and in strawberries too. Female lays up to 10 eggs a day in approximately 10 to 31 days. They lay their eggs in the early or middle May where their much preferred temperature is reached. The eggs are inserted into the stems, on petioles and even on the ribs of leaves. Some are also laid into buds or in the florets of flowers. The eggs will then hatch into nymphs within 7 to 10 days. The nymphs will undergo 5 stages of development. After 13 to 41 days these nymphs will turn into adults. The rate of their maturity develops depending on the temperature. They will mature rapidly on hot temperature.
How do Tarnished Plant Bugs damage my garden?
Tarnished Plant bugs has those piercing-sucking mouthparts which are used to pierce the leaves and fruits of your plants. These bugs are considered to be a “true bug.” It will inject poisonous saliva into your plants and leaves. The injected part will be distorted because this toxic serum kills the cells near the injected site.The “sting marks” cause yellowing and wilting of the sucked parts. The fruits will also be left deformed. The damage caused by these bugs is great. It can decrease the yields of your plants and can kill many of your vegetables and plants. Some of the signs that your organic garden is being infested by these terrible bugs are the abortion or dropped flower buds. These bugs can also cause the blooms to be distorted and are not able to open appropriately. The injury it inflicts to your plants includes deformity of leaves, scarring of stems, discoloration of stems and leaf petioles. The most severe effects happen during the middle or in late summer.
Knowledge about these pests is very important in eliminating your resident garden pests. By having knowledge about them, you will know when, where, what and how you can attack them. This knowledge will serve as your weapon in eliminating them. If you want to learn more on how to eliminate or get rid of these pests, continue to read on the next chapter!
After learning about the characteristics, life cycle and the damages caused by the pests on your organic garden, you are now armed with knowledge. Now that you have your weapon against your resident pests, it is high time to know about the actions that you can do to eliminate these ghastly pests. There are many ways that you can get rid of these pests without the use of chemical based commercial products. The following are the common pests found on your garden and the most effective ways of getting rid of them.
Knowing about aphids is a great advantage for you. You should attack when they are vulnerable. Aside from that, aphids also have their natural enemies.
- Beneficial bugs against aphids
There are bugs that are considered the natural enemies of aphids. These bugs are known to be one of the most effective methods of getting rid of aphids with organic pesticides. You can try to indulge and look after these beneficial bugs. Aphid midges, lacewings, and ladybugs are known to eliminate aphids. Learn to love these bugs as they can kill those pesky aphids.
- Plants against aphids
There are also certain plants that can drive away aphids namely onions and garlic. The smell of onion and garlic is irritating for aphids, that is why these pests goes their way to avoid going to places planted with these. You can also try to plant onion and garlic on parts of your garden that is infested by aphids. If you do this, these pests will surely scurry away from your garden. You can also make an organic spray made from garlic.
- Plants that aphids love
You may also want to grow plants that aphids love. These plants will lure aphids away. It is better if you grow these plants far from your organic garden to have a aphids free garden. Examples of such plants are aster, cosmos, dahlia, hollyhock, larkspur, mum, nasturtium, tuberous begonia, verbena and zinnia.
- Pressurized water
There is nothing more satisfying than seeing these aphids literally run away and leave your cherished garden behind. You can do this by washing aphids away. You can wash aphids away by applying pressurized water. A strong spray of water from a hose will surely do the trick.
- Lemon magic
You can also try a recipe where lemon is the main ingredient. Lemon is an effective way to kill aphids. You just need to peel at least five lemons and squeeze the juice in a container. Simmer the lemon peelings on a 300 ml of boiling water for at least 30 minutes. Place the lemon juice on a spray bottle and drench the stems of your affected plants with this. Water the soil of your plants from the boiled lemon peelings. The smell from this boiled water will ward off aphids.
There are many organic ways that you can maximize to get rid of caterpillars from your garden. Here are some ways that you can utilize to get rid of these gooey creatures.
- Handpicking the sticky caterpillars
This is one of the best ways you can do. Just put on a gloves and check for caterpillars around your garden. It is easy to spot places where caterpillars are reigning in. Check for places where the foliage of your plants getting bare. Surely, there will be a caterpillar lurking around the corner. Handpick the caterpillars making sure that you use gloves since their sting is highly irritating. You can crush the caterpillars by stomping over them or you can drown them on a pail of soapy water.
- Tent and egg destruction
Aside from getting rid of the caterpillar the traditional way, you can also destroy their tents. This way you can get lots of them. Again, it is easy to look for their tents. The tell-tale sign of bare plants and the white colored tents in contrast to the green and brown environment will give them away. Wear your gloves and prune the caterpillar infested parts. Crush the tents and eggs to the ground or you can again drown them on a pail of water with soap.
- Bacillus thuringiensis (BT) blast
The use of BT against caterpillars was already utilized long ago. It is still very effective nowadays. BT is a type of bacteria that when ingested by caterpillars will immediately kill them off. BT is available in two preparations: powder and liquid form. You can spray the liquid form on the foliage of your plants and you can dust the powder form over your plants. A mouthful of foliage treated with BT will take effect for at least 20 minutes. BT is available on your local garden shops and is considered as an organic pesticide. According to BT users, one application of BT is enough for a long time. However, you can still apply BT once in a while since it is not harmful to your pets, children and other beneficial creatures on your garden such as bees and earthworms.
- Predatory animals against caterpillars
As you can see, the fleshy body aside from the fact that the diet of caterpillars is leaves make them high in protein. Caterpillars are considered as one of the basic food of animals such as birds and frogs. You can lure occasional birds to your garden by simply having a bird bath. You can also have frogs on your garden by building an artificial pond. Frogs feed in caterpillar and they can be very useful in getting rid of caterpillars.
- Garlic and chili combo
You can also try to make your own organic pesticide. Just mix minced garlic and chili on a spray bottle with water and spray them on your infested plants. However, this garlic and chili combo is effective or low populations of caterpillar on your garden.
Getting rid of cabbage maggots is nearly impossible. The next best thing that you can do is to use prevent them from going to your garden.
- Alkaline prevention
Cabbage maggots absolutely hate an alkaline environment. You can prevent the proliferation of cabbage maggots by mixing wood ashes and lime and place it around your plants especially your cabbage and mustard family plants. This will help in warding off these pests. Also, you can use diatomaceous earth if you prefer. However, you must know that constant application of alkaline mixture can raise the pH of your soil and it is not good for your plants. Keep cabbage maggot at bay with the use of alkaline mixture!
- Floating row covering prevention
The adult counterpart of cabbage maggots is the adult fly. To be able to prevent cabbage maggots from proliferating you should first prevent the adult fly from laying their eggs in your garden. To be able to prevent this, you can place floating row coverings on your plants during the spring. Spring is the time where adult flies lay their egg on the stems of your plants near the soil line.
- Cleaning as prevention
One of the things that you can do is to keep the surrounding of your plants clean. Make sure that there is no dead weed around your plants. Keeping the surrounding clean will help your discourage adult fly from laying eggs to your garden thereby preventing the emergence of cabbage maggots. Aside from that, you should not leave your recently harvested plants from your garden. Put those away quickly, however, if you see cabbage maggots, immediately burn these plants and do not compost these.
- Bug prevention
Just like the aphids, cabbage maggots are predators to some beneficial bugs. Bugs that look similarly like earwigs which have pinchers on their tail called rove beetles are natural predators of cabbage maggots. You should nurture these bugs. These bugs are a great help in eliminating these annoying cabbage maggots.
- Red pepper and ginger prevention
You can also use powdered red pepper and ginger around the stems near the soil line of your plants. Red pepper and ginger is proven to be irritating for cabbage a maggot that is why it is used as an organic way in preventing the multiplication of the said pests.
Getting rid of COLORADO POTATO BEETLES with organic pesticides
Colorado potato beetles are considered to be the most important defoliator of potatoes. It also affects other plant leaves and stems as well as yields. It is best to get rid and prevent their proliferation.
- Handpicking Colorado potato beetles
If you’re organic garden’s size is not that big, handpicking these pests can be done. Just put on your gloves and pick the overwintered adults as well as the masses of eggs early in the season. Since the larvae causes most of the damage, you must take care first of getting rid of the adults and eggs. Do your handpicking for a few weeks to ensure that you can get rid of these pests.
- Deep Straw Mulching
Mulching with straw can be very beneficial for your organic garden. Mulching heavily will keep the tubers out of reach from the rays of the sun. It will also help in creating a nurturing ecosystem for the natural predators of Colorado potato beetles namely lady bugs, green lacewings and ground beetles. It will also help in confusing these pests. These beetles will have a hard time in finding your plant amidst the straws. Mulching with straw is truly beneficial!
- Plants against Colorado potato beetle
You should also consider growing plants that can inhibit the proliferation of these beetles in your organic garden. You can grow sage, catnip and tansy alongside your potatoes and other plants that are eaten by these beetles.
- Bacillus thuringiensis var. San Diego (BTSD)
BTSD is a variation of BT. It is also effective in killing your resident Colorado potato beetle. It is a type of bacteria that can kill these beetles once ingested. These bacteria will multiply in the gut of the Colorado potato beetle instantly killing these irritating beetles.
- Neem oil solution
Applying neem oil can also be beneficial against Colorado potato beetles. However, you must follow the directions on the label since neem oil can harm other insects that are considered to be natural predators of these beetles.
Getting rid of CUTWORMS with organic pesticides
Cutworms can be truly devastating. Aside from the fact that they look grisly, they can literally decapitate your innocent seedlings and young plants. To be able to get rid of these pests, prevention and some action is a must.
- Plant collar
You can protect your seedlings and young plants from cutworms by using plant collars. This is a traditional method but it is one of the most effective methods of organically getting rid of cutworms. You can use collars made up from papers, PVC’s, cardboards and even your usually useless toilet tube papers. You can also utilize paper cups and metal cans. These collars will serve as barrier from these pests. Cutworms will not be able to go through these barriers leaving your plants safe and sound.
- Crushed eggshells and diatomaceous earth
You can use your empty eggshells in eliminating cutworms. You just have to crush these eggshells and apply it on the soil around your plants. You can also use diatomaceous earth for this. This type of method is a bit grim. The crushed eggshells and the diatomaceous earth will inflict wounds to the fleshy body of cutworms. Cutworms will die from dehydration because of this.
- Toiling your organic garden
Dip toiling and digging your garden at the last weeks of fall and once again on the first weeks of spring can absolutely help. The soil laid eggs and larvae will be unearthed from their hibernation. You can simply crush them thus, eliminating a large population of cutworms. You can also have the aid of chickens. Chickens will surely help you in getting rid of these pests.
- Bug zappers
You can also use bug zappers. Bug zappers can kill the adult cutworms. If the adult cutworms are killed, there will be nothing to lay eggs thereby eliminating the cutworms from your garden.
- Pineapple weed or sage brush extracts
A student from University of British Columbia claimed that cutworms will let themselves starve than eat plants and seedlings treated with extracts from pineapple weed or sage brush. It wouldn’t be bad if you try these extracts yourself.
Mexican bean beetles have overwhelming effects on your organic garden as well as your yields. It is imperative for you to take actions. You can absolutely get rid of these annoying beetles by applying organic methods.
- Handpicking Mexican bean beetles
Once again, the power of this traditional handpicking method can be applied to your organic garden. You can start handpicking these beetles on their larval stage. Make sure that you crush these beetles and their eggs. If you are too busy or you don’t have the courage to crush these irritating beetles, you can drown them on a pail of soapy water. To be able to have fun, you can enlist the help of your children or other family members. Just make sure that you are wearing gloves to avoid irritation from the bristly bodies of larvae.
- Mexican bean beetles eliminator
There are also certain Mexican bean beetle eliminator that is available. These eliminators are the parasitic wasps. These parasitic wasps Pediobiusfoveolatus, was used successfully on organic gardens and farms. These wasps will lay their eggs on the larvae of Mexican bean beetles, when these eggs hatch and become adults, they will kill the beetles. Don’t worry; these parasitic wasps will not destroy your plants. These wasps feed off the nectar of flowers near your bean garden beds. However, there is one drawback in having these parasitic wasps as Mexican bean beetle eliminator, they have short life span and they cannot survive the harsh winter months. Thereby, you need to reintroduce these wasps.
- Foil prevention
University of California suggests that gardeners should use foil mulch in their garden to ward off insects including Mexican been beetle. The aluminum mulch will reflect the rays of the sun and repel insects. This is one innovative and chemical free way of getting rid of these beetles. It will not hurt if your try this method.
- Beetle traps
One of the best things that you can do is to trap the Mexican bean beetles. Simply plant one of their preferred bean plants such as soybean. Let the soybean be infested with the beetles and then destroy the larvae and the eggs. This is a very effective way in decreasing the population of Mexican bean beetles.
- Early planting
What better way can you do but prevent Mexican bean beetle infestation? You can definitely prevent these beetles from taking over your garden by planting early. These beetles are especially active during the mid and late spring particularly on July and August. One of the things that you can do is plant as early as possible. You can plant as early as possible so that you can harvest the beans before July and August. This way, they will not have the time to eat their way in your beans ‘leaves, stems and pods.
These tarnished plant bugs should be eliminated from your organic garden. Aside from the fact that it kills your plants, it also deforms your plants and flowers causing an unsightly appearance for your organic garden. Surely, you wouldn’t want these bugs to deform your precious organic garden right? Surely not!
- PeristenusdigoneutsiParasitic wasp
Researches are being done about Peristenusdigoneutsi. Peristenusdigoneutsiis a parasitic wasp that is said to help in eliminating these tarnished plant bugs. These wasps kill the bugs on their nymph stage. Killing the nymphs will help in decreasing the population of these bugs. It was already introduced in New Jersey and some parts of New York.
- Natural tarnished plant bugs predators
You can also enlist the use of natural predators of tarnished plant bugs. Birds and lizards prey on these bugs. You can nurture birds on your organic garden by placing a bird bath near your irrigation system. Birds are very useful in eliminating other insects too. You can also nurture the growth of big eyed bugs, damsel bugs and the tiny pirate bugs by growing diverse plants on your garden. Grow plants that will lure these beneficial bugs on your garden. These bugs will kill those bothersome tarnished plant bugs.
- Weed controlling prevention
Controlling the growth of weeds will also help in decreasing the population of the tarnished plant bugs. The clumps of weeds especially those weeds which have broad leaves is where these troublesome bugs lay their eggs and this is also the place where they hibernate during the winter months. It is important to remove these weeds so that these bugs will have no place to lay their eggs. It will also help in greatly decreasing their population. Remove chickweed, creeping Charlie, dandelion, goldenrod and wild mint from your garden as these weeds host the tarnished plant bugs. Aside from this benefit, it will also help in maintaining the cleanliness and will make your organic garden organized and neat.
- Use of sticky boards
Many organic ways are not effective in eliminating tarnished plant bugs. The use of sticky boards can be really effective in these bugs infestation. This method is effective since adult tarnished plant bugs fly. You can place your sticky boards in strategic places such as on trees and shrubs. This is to catch these bugs on their flight. Eliminating the adult bugs will decrease their population greatly as there will be no more bugs to reproduce if the adults will die.
- Organic sprays
You can use some organic sprays such as sprays made from garlic oil, kaolin clay and other plant oils that are irritating to tarnished plant bugs. You can also use this method in large area infestation of these bugs. Organic sprays are best used in congruence with other known effective methods.
Learning about these methods can be very helpful for you and your organic garden. Feel free to try some of these methods on your garden and reap the benefits of pest free and healthy garden! Bear in mind that organic gardening can be very beneficial. In order to receive all the benefits of having a healthy garden, it is a must to take care of your plants, beneficial animals and insects and everything that is connected with your organic garden! A healthy garden means healthy yield. A healthy yield would mean a strong and healthy family!
All the best