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applestar
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Those pesky mint bugs are back (4-lined Plant Bugs)

I don't know what they're called but they seem to return every year around this time, just when the mints are looking their best. :x
They're orange-red, about the size of an adult aphid, and suck the juice out of the leaves from the bottom, leaving ugly black spots all over. They're quick to jump off the plant when disturbed so I can never seem to get a good look at them, catch them or even spray them.

I actually just remove all affected leaves, shoots, and sometimes entire plants. I own up to planting my mints directly in the ground :o. I don't care what they say, it's much easier to rip entire sections out and dispose of them when you have plenty of mint growing elsewhere. :() You just have to stay on top of it, but mowing and walking on them also keeps them within bounds. :wink:

Every year, I pull out mounds of mint by the roots, pot up some to give away, and toss the rest on top of the English Ivy infesting the woods behind my back fence in the hopes that the mints would root and give them some competition. So far, it hasn't worked, but I don't actually *plant* them among the ivy either.

As for the much maligned Ground Ivy (in the mint family) -- the few honeybees and bumble bees that I have seen this spring were always visiting the Ground Ivy flowers. Just this morning, I saw a bumble bee with pollen baskets. :D
Last edited by applestar on Mon May 24, 2010 1:39 am, edited 1 time in total.

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gixxerific
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Sorry to hear that, again. You keep coming up with all these pest here lately. :(

I have a couple of variety's of mint growing in pots (yes I'm scared :lol: ) They are doing fabulous so I will have to keep an eye on them for these pest.
This is my first year for mint, I have been looking at it for years and finally broke down and got some. Dang glad I did of few leaves to almost any dish does wonders. And that fact that i can walk by and pick a leaf or 2 and rub it in my fingers so I can smell the beautiful aroma all day is great too.

If you don't mind in your hour of need, what is a good size pot for mint?

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gixxerific
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Trying to find what may be causing you the problem.

I have found spider mites they are red but probably smaller than what you have, they do jump when disturbed. Are there any tiny webs on the plants?

Another well known pest of mint are aphids which do come in red but they don't jump when disturbed do they? They are the size of what you are seeing.

There are flea beetles but I believe they are black.

Did a bit of searching and didn't come up with anything that matches your description. there is a lot of talk about "mint aphids" but they are green.

Good luck.

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heya gix, spider mites do not jump.

You probably are seeing a predator of some kind. what size?


apple - that does not sound like such a bad pest. Probably feeds lots of things. You could always use a cover on some of the mint until they move on.
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Kisal
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Leafhoppers are sometimes reddish/orangish in color. Have you checked them out as a possibility? :?:
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Someone else who confesses to having mint actually in the ground! I do too! My herb garden is shady enough that the mint spreads more slowly, not as rampant as it would be otherwise.... I just let stuff fight it out.

Don't know about your pest, mint is aromatic enough that it isn't usually much bothered by anything.
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gixxerific
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If it makes you feel any better ( though I know it won't) your not alone.
I was doing some recon and milk spraying. So far I have found fungus gnats, aphids, flea beetles and spider mites.

I found A spider mite inside thought is was another aphid than I saw the web and all the legs. Wait a minute aren't spider mites really (microscopic) small. I swear, it was green had about eight or so legs about aphid size maybe a tad bigger even and on a web? Now I'm confused.

Whatever it was DE and NEEM is flying everywhere. :lol:

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Kisal
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Ummm... gixx, that sounds like it might have been a spider you zapped! :shock:
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gixxerific
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Kisal wrote:Ummm... gixx, that sounds like it might have been a spider you zapped! :shock:
I know I sound insane and I am. But I am pretty sure it wasn't a spider. It was very tiny and very green. It looked just like an aphid but on a thin strand of a web between 2 leafs. I should have take a pic.

Okay just took some pics I'll be back my batteries died. It's just hanging there not doing so well anymore. But still green and not spidery as it was before. It was climbing the web like a spider (before) it's hard to say maybe it has 6 legs I don't have a magnifying glass. Pics to come shortly.

Sorry to hijack your thread Apple. :oops:

[img]https://i272.photobucket.com/albums/jj185/gixxerific/Gardening/DSC03632.jpg[/img]
[img]https://i272.photobucket.com/albums/jj185/gixxerific/Gardening/DSC03633.jpg[/img]
[img]https://i272.photobucket.com/albums/jj185/gixxerific/Gardening/DSC03634.jpg[/img]
Heck might just be an aphid in a spider web I don't know.

Back to you Apple. 8)

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Kisal
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Gixx, it is an aphid. :)

If you look really closely at the last pic in your post above, you can see the 2 little tubes that aphids have on their rear ends, plus it only has 6 legs. :)
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you don't need neem for aphids gix. just soap is fine.
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clover mites maybe?

Rubbing alcohol works. :D
Stephanie

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applestar
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I found out what my pesky mint pests are:
Plant Bugs

The tarnished plant bug and fourlined plant bug are common sucking pests that attack a variety of bedding and perennial plants. The daisy and mint families are especially susceptible to attack. Both bugs are quick to fly and the nymphs quickly run to the under surface of leaves when approached. They damage plants by causing small (1/16 inch), round, sunken spots on the leaves. These spots occur when the leaf bugs kill the leaf tissues during feeding. When these spots are numerous, the entire leaf may curl and wither.

The tarnished plant bug has a light-green nymph and the adult has mottled brown colors. The fourlined plant bug has a bright red-orange nymph and the adults are lime green with four black stripes.

Damage to plants usually occurs in the late-spring and early-summer when the nymphs are active. If this activity is several weeks before flower bud initiation, no damage will be evident at the time of flowering. However, early flowering plants can be severely damaged. These are the plants that need protection.

Since the plant bug nymphs cause most of the damage, control of this stage is suggested. Inspect plants early and try to detect the first signs of the sucking damage. Small numbers of nymphs can be dislodged from the plants into a container of soapy water. Higher populations are best controlled with a registered pesticide or insecticidal soap. Check the plants again in two weeks to catch any late emerging nymphs.
https://ohioline.osu.edu/hyg-fact/2000/2151.html

I have the Fourlined Plant Bug. I thought I got them all, then just noticed a NEW patch of peppermint that I forgot I started :roll: and it has a MUCH worse infestation there. They're even getting into the Ground Ivy. :evil:

I'll have to deal with them tomorrow. I was too busy today.

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gixxerific
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Gald you figured it out Apple now onto eradicating them.

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