Sunday, May 08, 2011

Wash Your Mouth Out With Soap

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Our poor plum trees! The aphids are really out-of-control this spring, sucking the life out of the plums' youngest, softest growth.




Although these two were hard at work, combating aphids (larval ladybugs are some of the best predators of aphids), we didn't think that they could fight the entire battle.

So, Robb and I sprayed the tree down with soapy water. A day later, most of the aphids were dead.

Gross, huh?

7 comments:

Curbstone Valley Farm said...

We've noticed a lot of aphids this year too, but we're also seeing a tremendous increase in the number of lady bug larvae. They seem to be all over the garden right now...not that I'm complaining! We need all the help we can get ;)

Martha said...

Uh, it looks like those ladybugs are busy, but I don't think they are eating aphids...

Dave B. said...

Aphids descended late on my brussels sprouts last year. I had to pitch the entire bunch. It was disgusting!

Nancy Lewis said...

My onions have been attacked by black aphids. In my integrated pest management class we learned the best method is to blast them off plants with water. This damages their sucking mouth parts (gross). I found I had to do this repeatedly over a few days, but after that the aphids have decreased almost to nothing; maybe this will give the ladybugs an edge up.

Kim said...

Seriously, those ladybugs are working hard ;)

I had black aphids all over several plants, and the damage was so bad on one that I just trimmed off all the infested leaves/branches (for some reason they only attacked a few branches). I spray with a food-safe spray every so often now, since the plants are (I think) too delicate to be sprayed with a strong enough spray of water to shake aphids loose. Also, we don't have a hose.

Anonymous said...

When we were in 2nd grad we had a science project where each kid had a lettuce plant, and to combine science with math we would count the ever increasing amount of aphids that would reproduce on each one, after each had been "gifted" with 5 starter aphids. The aphid population got so bad over a week that I refused to eat lettuce ever again, and was a real nag to my parents about washing imaginary (or not) aphids off all veggies from our garden. Thanks a lot, science!

Annalisa

Kristen said...

My garden has a nasty aphid infestation this year too--over 5,000 miles away from you! What's the deal with those nasty critters? Ruined my cilantro, lettuce and spinach and severely peeved my tulips--and at a point when everything was too delicate to blast hard with water. I've got eggs on my tomato leaves too. Urk. Bleh bleh bleh.

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