Chris_CXC
Full Member
Posts: 19
Joined: Sun Sep 01, 2013 2:33 am
Location: Los Angeles, CA

Identification and Eradication!

Newbie gardener here. Started a small vegetable garden and immediately noticed some pests.

I tried my best to take pictures with my iPad.

Any idea what these are and what I can do?

Thanks!
Attachments
photo6.jpg
photo6.jpg (34.17 KiB) Viewed 808 times
photo4.JPG
photo4.JPG (34.54 KiB) Viewed 808 times
photo3.JPG
photo3.JPG (52.18 KiB) Viewed 808 times

User avatar
rainbowgardener
Super Green Thumb
Posts: 25303
Joined: Sun Feb 15, 2009 11:04 pm
Location: TN/GA 7b

Re: Identification and Eradication!

first picture just looks like a couple green bumps. Do they move? Do they have legs? Are you thinking they are insects? Second picture is some kind of teeny tiny insect, looking pretty harmless. In both cases, is any damage being done? The plants look healthy.

You can't start worrying about every bump and tiny insect; nature is FULL of them. The time to worry is if significant damage is being done.

The third picture looks like probably a bit of septoria, a fungal disease that tomato plants are very prone to. By this time in the season, in humid climates, it is almost inevitable that they will have bit of it. Just cut off and trash (not in the compost pile) any leaves that are showing the brown spots. It helps to mulch well to create a barrier between the soil and the plant, only water the soil, not the leaves, and cut off any bottom leaves that might touch the soil. You probably have not much more than a month left in your tomato season. Practice good hygiene and your plants should make it through until then.

Relax!! :) It's nature. If you want pristine plants with no bugs or marks, get a hydroponics set up indoors.

And don't start thinking about "eradicating" all the little bugs. 1) it's impossible 2) MANY of them are beneficial in the garden and prey on / parasitize etc, the ones you don't want 3) if you start using poisons, you get rid of all the beneficials and then the bad bugs take over.
Twitter account I manage for local Sierra Club: https://twitter.com/CherokeeGroupSC Facebook page I manage for them: https://www.facebook.com/groups/65310596576/ Come and find me and lots of great information, inspiration

User avatar
applestar
Mod
Posts: 28183
Joined: Thu May 01, 2008 11:21 pm
Location: Zone 6, NJ (3/M)4/E ~ 10/M

Re: Identification and Eradication!

The first photo *might* be treehoppers. They are sucking insects and can potentially be carriers of disease as any sucking insects can, but I have not noticed them actually cause sufficient damage by their feeding activities in and of itself unless the plants are very small. They will initially "squirrel" -- i.e. Shift position to hide on the other side of the stem -- when threatened, then hop and fly off. I just make a point of forcing them to get off the plant if concerned, but don't bother to try to capture them.

If you are quick, you can grab them and squish them. The kind I get most in my garden has hard triangular corners on their "shoulders" and can hurt if I try to squish bare handed, but smooth streamlined ones are no problem. I sometimes see them caught in spider webs and I've seen praying mantis dining on them once in a while too. :twisted:
Learning never ends because we can share what we've learned. And in sharing our collective experiences, we gain deeper understanding of what we learned.

imafan26
Mod
Posts: 11624
Joined: Tue Jan 01, 2013 1:32 pm
Location: hawaii, zone 12a 587 ft elev.

Re: Identification and Eradication!

The first does look like tree hoppers. I see webbing on the tomatoes, so hopefully there's a spider setting up shop. I agree, the leaves do look like fungal disease.

From your picture it looks like you have your garden up against a fence. It will help to plant farther away from the fence and farther apart to improve air circulation. It will help with the bugs and the fungal issues.

The plants look like they are getting enough nutrition.

Mulch the soil and either drip water or water at the base of the plants. Remove the lower leaves of the tomato.

It also looks like you are planting the same family together, eggplant and tomatoes. It helps to diversify the plants a little. When there are pest issues, they attack members of the same family and usually will go for the weakest plant first.

It is best if you can rotate plantings when you have issues and it really helps to plant slightly out of season if you can. I know not everyone can do that, but it helps if you can get a jump on the season before the bugs peak in summer.

Not every bug is bad and if you are gardening organically, you can plant nectar and host plants to attract beneficial insects. The pest population will never be zero, but you should be able to get a harvest by scouting and taking care of problems early and keeping the plants as healthy as possible.
Happy gardening in Hawaii. Gardens are where people grow.

Chris_CXC
Full Member
Posts: 19
Joined: Sun Sep 01, 2013 2:33 am
Location: Los Angeles, CA

Re: Identification and Eradication!

Thanks for the replies guys.

Yeah, the title was more of a joke :)


I used to have a caterpillar on the jalapeno plant (with the green "bumps"). I hand picked him off, but not before he did a bunch of damage. I was just curious what these new guy were. If they aren't causing any significant damage, they are free to stay. I've added 2 new photos of them.

As for the tomatoes, I guess it's nothing other than a little fungus. The webbing noted is actually dog fur..... We have 2 golden retrievers and they shed everywhere!

I'll move them all away from the fence and see how that goes.


Thanks again!
Attachments
photo8.JPG
photo8.JPG (35.12 KiB) Viewed 769 times
photo7.JPG
photo7.JPG (37.94 KiB) Viewed 769 times

imafan26
Mod
Posts: 11624
Joined: Tue Jan 01, 2013 1:32 pm
Location: hawaii, zone 12a 587 ft elev.

Re: Identification and Eradication!

Tree hoppers will be picked off by the birds. They don't do a lot of damage to healthy plants but may transmit diseases.
Happy gardening in Hawaii. Gardens are where people grow.

Return to “Organic Insect and Plant Disease Control”