lake_tuna
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Something keeps eating my plant leaves

I have a tomato, bell pepper, and some herb plants growing in front of my house in containers, and something keeps leaving holes on my leaves! I've tried a soap spray, but it doesn't work. Maybe I need to up the soap level? I live in Southern CA. Does anyone know what does this and how to prevent it?

This is an example of my bell pepper plant:
[img]https://i285.photobucket.com/albums/ll63/youn0813/IMG_1485-5.jpg[/img]

gumbo2176
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Chances are they are eating from the underside of the leaf and likely doing so at night. Grab a flashlight and check them at night to see what you're dealing with.

I can't tell you how many times I've found leaf eating slugs, caterpillars, and insect eggs on the underside of plant leaves in my garden.

lake_tuna
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gumbo2176 wrote:Chances are they are eating from the underside of the leaf and likely doing so at night. Grab a flashlight and check them at night to see what you're dealing with.

I can't tell you how many times I've found leaf eating slugs, caterpillars, and insect eggs on the underside of plant leaves in my garden.
OH, it's the UNDERSIDE?! I read about the flashlight-check method, but I didn't notice anything on the topside of the leaves.. I will check again tonight. How about a remedy or something for this? Can I try those bug sprays at Home Depot on my veggie plants?
I just got into gardening.

gumbo2176
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I would think if you hit them with the soap based mixture, it would do the trick. I'm kind of at a crossroads when it comes to spraying the garden. Sometimes in La. where I live, the pests just become too overbearing to do much else, but I really prefer to limit the use of commercial sprays as much as possible.

This past summer there was such an invasion of stink bugs in my garden it was almost biblical. Many of my tomato and bean plants literally had hundreds of them on the plants at any given time. I only had to spray a couple of times in a 2 week period to make things right but they destroyed many of the tomatoes that were ripening during that period.

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Kisal
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Slugs, snails and caterpillars are often easily picked off the plants by hand. Just carry a jar or bucket of soapy water with you while you check your plants, pick off any pests you find and drop them in the water. :)
"Isn't it enough to see that a garden is beautiful without having to believe that there are fairies at the bottom of it too?" - Douglas Adams

cynthia_h
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If the culprits are slugs and/or snails, soap spray won't do a thing to get rid of them. Hand-picking (well, for me "trowel picking") and swift dispatch do the job. We have loads, tons, a plethora of posts here at THG about slug and snail "methods" :wink: which won't poison your plants, but I'm still in favor of...

Snail Hunting.

Cynthia H.
Sunset Zone 17, USDA Zone 9

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Kisal
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A few night hours spent on a productive snail hunt does the heart good! :lol:
"Isn't it enough to see that a garden is beautiful without having to believe that there are fairies at the bottom of it too?" - Douglas Adams

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rainbowgardener
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Agree with above. That looks like slug damage. I have seen people here claim that slugs don't like/ bother green peppers, but they sure like mine!

The soap spray works on small soft bodied insects like aphids, it doesn't work on slugs, though they can be drowned in a bowl of soapy water.

Diatomaceous earth works to keep slugs away from plants.

Or type slug control into the Search the Forum feature to find lots that's been written here about them, including some fairly hilarious accounts of people's night-time slug hunts!
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