JDMimportKING
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What is Eating my Ghost Pepper Leaves?

Hi everyone, i just joined and need help because this is my first time ever growing any kind of plant. The one you see in the pics was an extra that started to grow very late so i put it out side and it started to grow really well. But now all of a sudden something started to eat it and i cant catch whatever is doing it in the act. I have read that it could be a number of bugs, but i really wanted to post a pic on here to get some of your opinions.
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Northernfox
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Re: What is Eating my Ghost Pepper Leaves?

I am not sure but it could be a lot of things. Slugs made the same kind of damage to my plants last year
Stephen

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rainbowgardener
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Re: What is Eating my Ghost Pepper Leaves?

Slugs are the commonest thing that eat my pepper plants. You will never see them unless you go out with a flashlight late at night and look closely. But slugs generally leave roundish-oval holes in the centers of leaves. Things that eat leaf margins like that are more often caterpillar or beetle type pests.

You will need to just keep looking carefully, in the day and in the night. It is hard to know what to do, until you know what pest you have.
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applestar
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Re: What is Eating my Ghost Pepper Leaves?

A small, isolated round-ish hole in the middle of a leaf like that could be where a caterpillar hatched from an egg laid on the underside. Typically, they eat their empty eggshell and a round hole in the leaf to fortify themselves before heading over to the nearest leaf edge to start munching.
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Northernfox
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Re: What is Eating my Ghost Pepper Leaves?

Monsters I tell you!
Stephen

JDMimportKING
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Re: What is Eating my Ghost Pepper Leaves?

rainbowgardener wrote:Slugs are the commonest thing that eat my pepper plants. You will never see them unless you go out with a flashlight late at night and look closely. But slugs generally leave roundish-oval holes in the centers of leaves. Things that eat leaf margins like that are more often caterpillar or beetle type pests.

You will need to just keep looking carefully, in the day and in the night. It is hard to know what to do, until you know what pest you have.
I believe i have found the pest that has been eating my plant!!! Its a beetle of some kind, i cant identify it because its really small and there are no markings on it. Its dark brown and its not a beetle with a hump back, the shell/wings of it don't cover the hole body. These pics are the best i could do for right now!!!
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rainbowgardener
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Re: What is Eating my Ghost Pepper Leaves?

Yup, that could be the guy. I'm thinking perhaps a juvenile of squash bug:

https://www.ext.colostate.edu/pubs/insect/05609.html

or stinkbug:

https://www.robsplants.com/critters/bugbeetles.php (you have to scroll down a good ways to get to the stinkbugs)

Check the underside of leaves for egg clusters.

Squash bugs have coppery bronze eggs, while stink bugs have pearly white eggs. I'm voting for stinkbug, just because squash bugs really do stay mostly on squash family stuff.
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JDMimportKING
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Re: What is Eating my Ghost Pepper Leaves?

rainbowgardener wrote:Yup, that could be the guy. I'm thinking perhaps a juvenile of squash bug:

https://www.ext.colostate.edu/pubs/insect/05609.html

or stinkbug:

https://www.robsplants.com/critters/bugbeetles.php (you have to scroll down a good ways to get to the stinkbugs)

Check the underside of leaves for egg clusters.

Squash bugs have coppery bronze eggs, while stink bugs have pearly white eggs. I'm voting for stinkbug, just because squash bugs really do stay mostly on squash family stuff.
Thanks, I'm going to check for eggs in a bit!!! Any thing I can use to keep them away?

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rainbowgardener
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Re: What is Eating my Ghost Pepper Leaves?

Have you told us where you are? I presume somewhere in the southern hemisphere if you are growing peppers now. Australia? South Africa?

Anyway, unfortunately stinkbugs are a difficult pest to deal with. A bit easier now as juveniles, once they are in their final hard shelled form, they are pretty resistant to anything.

Easiest is to keep watching all the time for those egg clusters. Remove and crush them. Ladybugs and lacewings also like to eat those eggs, so planting things like marigolds and sunflowers that attract them is a good thing. The juveniles are pretty vulnerable to insecticidal soap sprays like Safer's, especially if you can manage to spray it directly on them. The only good thing about the adults is that they are large and pretty slow, so you can hand pick them off and drop into a bowl of soapy water, or shake them into the bowl.

But vigilance is required, you don't want to let it become a major infestation. And unfortunately, they are very mobile, so even if you managed to get rid of every one from your yard, they can come right back from elsewhere. And they eat any crop you might be growing.

There are traps for them: https://www.rescue.com/product/reusable- ... k-bug-trap but Amazon had a lot of reviews saying they didn't work: https://www.amazon.com/Stink-Trap-Sterli ... B005BV0QP2
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JDMimportKING
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Re: What is Eating my Ghost Pepper Leaves?

rainbowgardener wrote:Have you told us where you are? I presume somewhere in the southern hemisphere if you are growing peppers now. Australia? South Africa?

Anyway, unfortunately stinkbugs are a difficult pest to deal with. A bit easier now as juveniles, once they are in their final hard shelled form, they are pretty resistant to anything.

Easiest is to keep watching all the time for those egg clusters. Remove and crush them. Ladybugs and lacewings also like to eat those eggs, so planting things like marigolds and sunflowers that attract them is a good thing. The juveniles are pretty vulnerable to insecticidal soap sprays like Safer's, especially if you can manage to spray it directly on them. The only good thing about the adults is that they are large and pretty slow, so you can hand pick them off and drop into a bowl of soapy water, or shake them into the bowl.

But vigilance is required, you don't want to let it become a major infestation. And unfortunately, they are very mobile, so even if you managed to get rid of every one from your yard, they can come right back from elsewhere. And they eat any crop you might be growing.

There are traps for them: https://www.rescue.com/product/reusable- ... k-bug-trap but Amazon had a lot of reviews saying they didn't work: https://www.amazon.com/Stink-Trap-Sterli ... B005BV0QP2
I live in Florida, are winters are mixed between anywhere from 30 degrees at the lowest and 80 degrees at the highest. I have all but one of my plants inside under a grow light. Mostly because the bugs around me are really bad with eating mine and my family's plants. My mom lost a young catnip plant to white fly's. I have a total of 9 plants, theirs 5 bhut jolokia's and 4 moruga scorpion's. There about 4 to 5 inches tall. I'm going to go ahead and transplant them this weekend because there just in clear plastic dixie cups and the roots have reached the bottom of them. Anyway thanks for your help!!!

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rainbowgardener
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Re: What is Eating my Ghost Pepper Leaves?

OK, you hadn't said you were talking about indoor plants. Is the one pictured being eaten the outdoor one? I really hope you don't have stinkbugs in the house. They do like to come in for the winter and can become a major nuisance once they are in your house. If the indoor plants are getting eaten like that, I would do a major search and destroy for any bugs, before they get established in your house.
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JDMimportKING
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Re: What is Eating my Ghost Pepper Leaves?

rainbowgardener wrote:OK, you hadn't said you were talking about indoor plants. Is the one pictured being eaten the outdoor one? I really hope you don't have stinkbugs in the house. They do like to come in for the winter and can become a major nuisance once they are in your house. If the indoor plants are getting eaten like that, I would do a major search and destroy for any bugs, before they get established in your house.
Ya the one in the pic is outside.

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rainbowgardener
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Re: What is Eating my Ghost Pepper Leaves?

Even in Florida (depending a bit on where in FLA) it may be too cold to be growing peppers now. That's why I thought southern hemisphere. Your peppers will not set fruit if night time lows are below 55. But it has a ways to grow before it is big enough to be fruiting anyway. Perhaps by then you will be warming up already. But very much time at 30 degrees will kill it and at any temp below about 45, it will benefit and keep growing better with protection from the cold at night.

How are the indoor ones doing? have you seen the winter peppers thread that is going on now?

https://www.helpfulgardener.com/forum/vi ... =4&t=55256
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Re: What is Eating my Ghost Pepper Leaves?

Peppers do like warm weather. I can still grow them now but the day temps are in the 80's and the night temp about 68 degrees. They are definitely growing slower. The Bhut Jolokia has put out flowers but I don't have any peppers. The Superchili and Tobasco are still loaded with peppers and the Kung pao and Caribbean Red have peppers on them.

Most peppers will grow slowly in cool weather but will rarely set peppers much below 68 degrees for me. In fact I usually have problems with stunting and dampening off when I try to germinate peppers at this time of year.

I know from past experience that peppers I plant in January will remain small and even stunted until March.
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Ivar
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Re: What is Eating my Ghost Pepper Leaves?

I had the same problem with my Ghost pepper plant I have out doors in a pot. And with further inspection I found Aphids. So now the task to rid these things.

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