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Jbest
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Posts: 209
Joined: Tue Dec 30, 2008 10:47 pm
Location: Zone 5B Pennsylvania

Squash bugs or squash bugs or use Ortho Bug Be Gone

I made the fatal mistake of using “Freeâ€
Life's Journey is not to arrive at the grave safely in a well preserved body,
but rather to skid in sideways, totally worn out, shouting,
"Holy crap what a ride!!"

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rainbowgardener
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Joined: Sun Feb 15, 2009 11:04 pm
Location: TN/GA 7b

squash bugs

Here's some non-poisonous suggestions for ways to work on dealing with your problem, though with an infestation of that magnitude, it may take a couple years:

Squash bugs seem to prefer yellow squashes, so it helps to grow zucchini, cucumbers, melons. If planting winter squash, try planting varieties that have shown resistance to squash bugs. These include Butternut and Royal Acorn. You can try planting things that are supposed to repel the bugs in with your squash. This includes garlic, onion, tansy, radishes, nasturtiums, marigolds, bee balm and mint. Planting your squash later in the season, once the majority of the squash bugs have already hatched and perished can help. Try putting boards down on the ground near squash plants over night. In the AM you can get rid of the bugs that have gathered under the boards. Dust around the plants with diatomaceous earth. Mulch heavily and then cover your plants with floating row cover. tightly secured. I spray plants with an organic repellant made like very hot salad dressing with salad oil (to help it stick to the plants), a little vinegar, lots of garlic, black pepper, hot pepper, some tomatoes, aromatic herbs, mint. Blend it up in water, strain, and spray on plants. Not fool proof, but it definitely seems to help.

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Jbest
Senior Member
Posts: 209
Joined: Tue Dec 30, 2008 10:47 pm
Location: Zone 5B Pennsylvania

All the edu-ag information I can find says that anything less than spraying pesticides is ineffective for the SB. They go so far as to name products and that Sevin is somewhat effective but BBG is the only one that will do the job. The research may have been paid by an Ortho grant, I do not know. I fell like they violated my garden and they will pay with there lived. All of them.
Life's Journey is not to arrive at the grave safely in a well preserved body,
but rather to skid in sideways, totally worn out, shouting,
"Holy crap what a ride!!"

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hendi_alex
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Joined: Sun Jul 06, 2008 11:58 am
Location: Central Sand Hills South Carolina

Most years, if the bugs show early, I spray a pesticide on the squash plants until the plants reach the blooming stage and then let nature take its course, but continue to hand pick the critters when I see them and also scraping off the eggs on leaves. If the squash get that vigorous head start, they seem to be able to weather the bugs and make a decent crop. Also, I only plant a couple of crooknecks and zucchini at a time, and plant a succession planting pretty far from the first group of plants.

Most years the bugs don't show up when the squash plants are young, so no spraying is done during those seasons.

One other idea may be to buy a large piece of inexpensive sheer cloth from the piece goods store, and use that as a floating screen over the plants. Don't know how that would affect pollination though. Perhaps uncover the plants for a couple hours in the morning, or just mechanically polllinate the flowers, if wind doesn't work for squash.
Eclectic gardening style, drawing from 45 years of interest and experience. Mostly plant in raised beds and containers primarily using intensive gardening techniques.
Alex

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