Full Member
Posts: 11
Joined: Fri Jun 12, 2009 2:53 am
Location: East Providence RI

BUg, Bugs and More Bugs

I'm kind of a new gardener, been doing it for a couple of years now and never had any problems with bugs until now. I noticed this little black bug with transparent wings all over the place but especially on my string beans plants and they are eating the leaves

When I did a closer inspection today of the other plants Tomatoes, Broccoli etc I also noticed Green Aphids, The little black bugs with transparent wings, spider mites (I see red ones but I also see little black ones) and I see a little kind of light tan or lcream colored with a darker stripe down the middle.

either way how do I get rid of these pests before they do any more damage? is there something I can buy and spray or dust with that will get rid of them all without getting rid of me and my family :P.

Also if someone knows of a reall good book, or web site that can help me with gardening, pests and such things like that I'd appreciate it!

Thanks in advance for the help

Super Green Thumb
Posts: 7501
Joined: Tue May 06, 2008 11:02 pm
Location: El Cerrito, CA

I often refer to The Organic Gardener's Handbook of Natural Insect and Disease Control, ed. Barbara W. Ellis and Fern Marshall Bradley (Rodale Press, Inc., 1992). I originally checked this book out of my public library (Spring 2008), but it was *so* useful that I purchased my own copy.

It's hardback, and therefore durable. There are close-up photos of harmful as well as beneficial insects/bugs, diseased and/or stressed leaves, and (usually) multiple suggestions for non-toxic management methods.

Maybe your local library has a copy so that you can thumb through it for yourself and look at the photos to identify your visitors...

I often prefer books to the Internet because I can take books outside to the plants and not worry that the pages (= printouts) will fly around! :lol:

For immediate help vs. aphids and other harmful plant eaters, mix 1 tsp. of liquid soap (e.g., Ivory Liquid Dish Soap or equivalent--do NOT use a detergent) in 1 quart of warm water. "Warm" water speeds up the dispersion of the soap into the water.

Use a spray bottle and spray the plants where the visitors are, esp. on the bottoms of the leaves.

Be sure that the leaves won't be wet in direct, hot sunlight; that introduces additional complications, like pinhole burning of the leaves. :( (Think about a magnifying lens and setting a little piece of dried grass on fire in direct sunlight. Same mechanism.)

I wish you success in this battle and, indeed, the entire war vs. Plant Destroyers.

Cynthia H.
Sunset Zone 17, USDA Zone 9

Full Member
Posts: 52
Joined: Tue Apr 21, 2009 3:34 pm
Location: Jefferson City, Missouri

I agree with Cynthia, but you can also add some cayenne pepper to the water. I have seen tons of different recipes for similar stuff. Lots of people add black pepper, garlic, and oil.

I use a mix of:

2 TBS Ground Red Pepper
6 Drops of dish soap
1 Gallon of water.

I can go back up the rows and see the little dots of red pepper dried on the leaves. I have never had a problem with it burning the plants or anything.

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