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Super Green Thumb
Posts: 3937
Joined: Sun Sep 26, 2010 1:10 pm
Location: ID/WA! border


It's fun sometimes, and perhaps a little dismaying, to see multiple ideas from knowledgeable gardeners on a single subject. Where it can be dismaying is when someone asks a question, like "what is eating my seedlings?!" There may be 4 or 5 suggestions, all of them well thought out and highly possible, all of them quite different.

You take bugs, for instance. You take 'em, unless they are "beneficials," I don't want to have anything to do with them! ... And, there is an example right there - if you try too hard to rid your garden of insect pests, you may rid your garden of beneficial predators and pollinators.

Weather and Bugs. It's an established idea that winter cold helps with keeping insect pest numbers down. We had a very mild winter here, 2014-15. Almost no spittle bugs showed up in my flowers this summer. They weren't out sliming the alfalfa in the fields around the big veggie garden. Leaf miners, which can nearly ruin my spinach and beets, never showed up. Not one!

I had problems with squash bugs ... especially when a sprinkler failed on one end of the squash and pumpkin patch during record hot June weather. Stress those plants with something like that and - here came the bugs!! Flea beetles did some real damage in the tomatoes after a bad windstorm, one year. Some years, you wouldn't even know that flea beetles can be a tomato pest. Beat up the young plants with wind and - here comes the flea beetles!

The desire for simplicity is just a fact about the way people think. Believing something, because of that psychology, doesn't invalidate anything. They may have the right answers because there are valid reasons for what is happening out there and valid answers to some of our problems.

? Turn off the 50mph growing season winds? Well, maybe not ... Pay attention to the sprinklers? Yeah.

who saw plenty of the leafhopper adults of those spittle bug larvae in late summer and fall, this year. Now what in tarnation is 2016 gonna bring!?

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