imafan26
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Creature Feature

I thought I would start another thread to feature creatures in the garden. Bad guys abound but good guys are also welcome

https://entnemdept.ufl.edu/creatures/veg ... weevil.htm
The pepper weevil is a tiny insect that shows up in late Spring to early Summer for me, but can be year round in warm climates. Peppers look like they are maturing early and then they turn brown and waterlogged. If you look closely you might see a small hole near the cap. The insides of the pepper are rotten and black. The pepper weevil lays its egg when the pepper is flowering on the young developing fruit. The larvae eats the insides of the pepper causing the tissue to necrose. Peppers can sometimes drop. By the time you notice the damage the lavae has already emerged and left.

Once the larvae is inside the fruit all you can do is trash or put the infested fruit down the disposal. Pick off any suspicous fruit. If you cut it you might see the larvae or the black damaged tissue inside.

Sanitation and not planting peppers in the same spot helps. Even 20 ft away can make a difference. If the weevils are widespread then planting non hosts for a couple of years is an alternative. . Larvae cannot be controlled with insecticides while they are inside the fruit. Adults can be controlled with pyrethrins or sticky traps. Pyrethrins (short acting) are allowed in NOP however it is highly toxic to bees and should only be used as a last resort.
Attachments
https://www.ent.uga.edu/veg/solanaceous/pepperweevil.htm
https://www.ent.uga.edu/veg/solanaceous/pepperweevil.htm
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imafan26
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Re: Creature Feature

Hibiscus erineum mite
https://www.ctahr.hawaii.edu/oc/freepubs/pdf/ip-7.pdf

The hibiscus erineum mite is so tiny you probably will never see one. It is easy though to recognize their damage. The galls on the plants are actually the plants response to the feeding of the mites. The galls can get so bad that all or most of the leaves will be galled and distorted.

Erineum mites start to appear around April - June. They travel on the wind so hosing off the leaves frequently can help keep them from gaining a foothold early on. They prefer to attack mostly the hybrid hibiscus (heart shaped leaves with serrated edges) and sometimes okra. The malvas (palmate leaves) and moschuetos varieities are not a prefered host.

Predatory mites do consume them, and if damage is light, the damaged leaves can be pruned off. All of the damaged leaves need to be bagged and destroyed. Hibiscus usually don't mind hard pruning, if it has a healthy root system.

Systemic miticides may be necessary if the damage is severe. However, disbud the plant and use a short term miticide to lessen the impact on beneficial insects and bees.

As an alternative, the hibiscus can be replaced with another variety that is less susceptible.
The cultivars ‘Apricot’,‘Empire’, ‘Pink Hibiscus’, ‘Itsy Bitsy Peach “Monch”’,‘“Zahm” Chinese’, and ‘Apple Blossom’ are less susceptible to hibiscus erineum mite infestation than ‘Chinese Red’, ‘Herman Shierman’, ‘Orange Hibiscus’, ‘Nii
Yellow’, and ‘Kardinal’. Most of these cultivars are suitable to grow as hedges.
Attachments
Galls on hibiscus leaves caused by hibiscus erineum mites
Galls on hibiscus leaves caused by hibiscus erineum mites
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imafan26
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Re: Creature Feature

Sometimes it is hard to tell a good bug from a bad one.

Lady bug larvae and pupae only a lady bug could love.
Attachments
Ladybug_pupa_20150109.jpg
lady bug larvae eat a lot of aphids
lady bug larvae eat a lot of aphids
lady_larva_joyce.jpg (43.05 KiB) Viewed 3440 times
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imafan26
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Re: Creature Feature

Mealy bug destroyer eats mealy bugs and scales.
https://www.ipm.ucdavis.edu/PMG/NE/mealy ... royer.html
Attachments
Mealy bug destroyer looks like a larger mealy bug but they move faster and there aren't as many of them.
Mealy bug destroyer looks like a larger mealy bug but they move faster and there aren't as many of them.
220px-Cryptolaemus_montrouzieri_larva_InsectImages_5195077_cropped.jpg (12.94 KiB) Viewed 3439 times
mealybug-destroyer.jpg
mealybug-destroyer.jpg (33.36 KiB) Viewed 3439 times
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imafan26
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Re: Creature Feature

This is a link to the Bug Book which contains pictures and information on both good and bad bugs.

https://www3.epa.gov/region1/eco/uep/pdfs/BugBook.pdf
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HoneyBerry
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Re: Creature Feature

This a a fun thread for me. I had a tree full of ladybug larva one year, a while ago. I was lucky that year.

I posted the following video already. It seems fitting for this thread, so I am reposting. The little peacock spiders are so cute in this video.

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=d_yYC5r8xMI
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imafan26
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Re: Creature Feature

It was a fun video. But it did not look like the female was all that impressed or she is playing hard to get
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imafan26
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Re: Creature Feature

Spider Mites
Mites are very tiny. You probably won't see them unless you are using a microscope. However the damage they cause is the best way to identify them.
Mites cause rasping damage to the undersides of leaves. They prefer the young leaves. The leaves will look patchy and stippled. the undersides of the leaves may have a bronze or reddish appearance. If you tap a leaf on a sheet of white pepper you may see something that looks like paprika on the paper, wait a minute or two if the "paprika" starts moving those are the mites. Spider mites will pucker and distort young pepper leaves and in severe infestations you will see spider webbing on the leaves.

https://www.ipm.ucdavis.edu/PMG/PESTNOTES/pn7405.html
Attachments
On severely infested plants webbing is a sure sign of  spider mites.
On severely infested plants webbing is a sure sign of spider mites.
spider-mite-control1.jpg (16.11 KiB) Viewed 3420 times
The top of the leaf will look stippled or like it has been scratched. The bottom may have reddish color to it.
The top of the leaf will look stippled or like it has been scratched. The bottom may have reddish color to it.
images.jpg (12.3 KiB) Viewed 3420 times
Most mites are not visible without magnification . They are actually tiny spiders and not insects so they are not that easy to control.  They are carried in dust on the wind so they make their appearance in the hot dusty days of summer.  They have many predators but severe infestations can still occur especially on drought stressed plants.  Most of the time, the best control is a good long heavy rain.
Most mites are not visible without magnification . They are actually tiny spiders and not insects so they are not that easy to control. They are carried in dust on the wind so they make their appearance in the hot dusty days of summer. They have many predators but severe infestations can still occur especially on drought stressed plants. Most of the time, the best control is a good long heavy rain.
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imafan26
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Re: Creature Feature

Cyclamen mite damage on peppers. You will never see a cylcamen mite without a microscope so learn to recognize the damage.
Distorted leaves with the youngest leaves afftected first and fruits that are covered with a fine hard netting.

https://ipm.uconn.edu/documents/raw2/Cyc ... hp?aid=208
https://www.ipm.iastate.edu/ipm/hortnews ... nmite.html
https://s939.photobucket.com/user/gasifi ... 0.jpg.html
https://www.ipm.ucdavis.edu/PMG/PESTNOTES/pn7405.html
https://extension.umd.edu/sites/default ... eppers.pdf

This is a link to a site all about the different kinds of mites that attack greenhouse plants.
https://www.omafra.gov.on.ca/english/cro ... 14-013.htm
Attachments
Twisted, and deformed pepper leaves can be caused by cyclamen mites, aphids, or viruses.   <br />Stressed plants can have multiple problems since misery often invites friends over. <br />Cyclamen mites can twist and distort leaves but you will not see the mites under the leaves without a microscope.  If the peppers look scarred with a hard netting, then it is most likely from cyclamen mites<br /><br />Aphids also cause leaves to pucker and curl.  Pepper aphids are large, but other species also attack peppes.  Aphids can be seen on th undersides of the leaves with a hand lens and the bottom of the leaves will have a sticky residue.<br /><br />Virus can also cause leaf distortion and it is hard to distinguish between virus and other problems.  There is no cure.  You would need to eliminate the other problems and if it is a virus, destroy the plant and sanitize the area.  Do not plant in the same place any susceptible plant for at least 3 years.  Aphids are often the vectors of disease.
Twisted, and deformed pepper leaves can be caused by cyclamen mites, aphids, or viruses.
Stressed plants can have multiple problems since misery often invites friends over.
Cyclamen mites can twist and distort leaves but you will not see the mites under the leaves without a microscope. If the peppers look scarred with a hard netting, then it is most likely from cyclamen mites

Aphids also cause leaves to pucker and curl. Pepper aphids are large, but other species also attack peppes. Aphids can be seen on th undersides of the leaves with a hand lens and the bottom of the leaves will have a sticky residue.

Virus can also cause leaf distortion and it is hard to distinguish between virus and other problems. There is no cure. You would need to eliminate the other problems and if it is a virus, destroy the plant and sanitize the area. Do not plant in the same place any susceptible plant for at least 3 years. Aphids are often the vectors of disease.
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imafan26
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Re: Creature Feature

Broad mites are another tiny terror that can only be seen microscopically. They are very fond of peppers. Mites are usually identified by the damage they cause more than by actually seeing the culprit. Broad mite and cyclamen mite damage looks very similar.

1. Feeding is preferred on the youngest growths causing deformation, twisting, hardening and stunting of the terminal buds.
2 Leaves turn downward and sometimes are coppery or purplish
3 Internodes are shortened and there are more lateral buds. More flowers are aborted
4. Russetting of fruit. May be around the cap or in severe infestations the whole fruit may be covered with the hard scarred tissue.

https://www.ars.usda.gov/is/pr/2007/070411.htm
https://entnemdept.ufl.edu/creatures/orn/broad_mite.htm
https://www.ent.uga.edu/veg/solanaceous/broadmite.htm
https://extension.psu.edu/plants/vegetab ... vegetables

Mites are difficult to control without also killing beneficial insects.
Predatory mites feed on them but usually do not control them if their numbers are large.

What you can do.
1. Mite's saliva not only deform plants but they stunt them. If infestations are severe, it is unlikely that the plant will recover so the best course of action is sanitation and bag and burn all residues. Some plants can be cut back and if mites in the area are controlled, they may be able to grow back with healthy leaves. It is an option for long lived plants but probably not worth trying on short lived annuals.
2 Inspect and isolate sick plants from healthy ones
3. Scout often and treat when pest numbers are few. Scout plants in the area. Many pests have alternate hosts so all of the hosts need to be treated.

There are not many miticides available to homeowners and while other pesticides will work, they also kill off beneficial insects so may cause pest populations to rebound later.

Spraying guidelines:

•Water the plant first (if it is dry) before spraying.
•Never mix a chemical fungicide or pesticide with any of these homemade treatments, wait at least 10 days.
•It is crucial to spray all pest controls and fertilizers very early in the morning or late in the evening.
•Spray only when the temperature will remain below 85 degrees F for several hours after you spray.
•Spray both sides of the leaves.
•Test a small area of a plant first. Leave it for a couple of days to determine whether it is safe for the whole plant.


Start with the least toxic first: and wait a couple of weeks to see results. If you change tactics wait a couple of more weeks at least before you try something else.

1. Water. Use a forceful spray of water and blast the pests off the leaves. This will have to be done daily. Usually mites become a problem in the hot dusty days of summer and it takes a good long rain for them to go away.

2. Insecticidal soaps and oils smother insects.
In potted plants, mix up a 5 gallon bucket of soap or oil and dip the plants to ensure good coverage. If spraying make sure you thoroughly drench the undersides of the leaves. Adding 1/2 cup of alcohol to each quart of solution increases effectiveness.

3. Cornell University general formula (fungicide, miticide,pesticide)
.Basic ingredients:

•2 tablespoons fine horticultural oil
•1 tablespoon mild liquid dish soap (not detergent)
•1 heaping tablespoon baking soda
•1 gallon (4.5L) of water

Optional ingredients:

•1 tablespoon or the equivalent of 8-8-8 fish emulsion/liquid seaweed (make sure your product does not contain sulphur)
•5-7 droplets of a liquid plant vitamin mixture
•Bacillus thuringiensis var. Kurstaki (Bt), at the recommended concentration (controls caterpillars)
*(You can apply this spray ever 2 weeks but you will probably find you only need to spray once a month.)

*(Try to use this spray solution before disease symptoms develop or as soon as you notice a problem.)

4. Garlic and cayenne pepper are natural miticides. You could try this all purpose spray.
https://www.rodalesorganiclife.com/home/ ... most-pests

5. Sulfur can be used as miticide but cannot be used within 2 weeks before or after an oil and cannot be used in the heat of the day.
https://www.keystonepestsolutions.com/la ... o_Sulf.pdf

6. 3 in 1 spray. Contains sulfur and pyretrins. This does give good knock down, but pyrethrins are toxic to beneficial insects and other animals, so rebound may be a problem if you do not get thorough coverage.
7. Sevin works on several insects but it has a higher toxicity and is toxic to beneficial insects.
Follow label instructions
8. Bayer insect, disease, and mite control contains imodicloprid. This is a systemic product and definitely very toxic to bees and beneficial insects. This product can last up to a year so I would use a shorter acting systemic like Rose Care which also contains imodicloprid but only lasts about 8 weeks. It is useful for mite control on ornamentals. Disbud plants to minimize damage to bees and other nectar feeding insects. Always read and follow label directions. Use only as a last resort.
9. There is a new product sucrashield that is made with honey and cane sugar. It works by attracting beneficial insects. I haven't tried it.
https://www.groworganic.com/sucrashield-pint.html
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applestar
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Re: Creature Feature

I'm getting this damage

broad mite - Polyphagotarsonemus latus (Banks)
https://entnemdept.ufl.edu/creatures/orn/broad_mite.htm
Image
On some of my indoor wintered peppers as well as the Arabian Jasmine. Some of them have recovered, which I think means I do have a few predator mites handling the situation in some cases even though they are still inside.

I thought it was the TRM (tomato russet mites) but didn't bother to verify by microscope. Is the above damage ALWAYS caused by Broad Mites?

I'm falling behind on putting everybody outside for the season. I really have to get the affected peppers and jasmine out there for the Garden Patrol to look after.
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imafan26
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Re: Creature Feature

Broad mite and cyclamen mite damage looks alike, but broad mites are more common on peppers than cyclamen mites. Cyclamen mites apparently love strawberry for hosts. These mites like to infest the buds so you see a lot of bud and distorted young growth. Usually you need a higher magnification or microscope to see these tiny guys.

Usually the spider mites and russet mites can be seen with loupes and have identifiable shapes.

Broad mites and cyclamen mites need a microscope to spot them. Even then the transluscent body of the broad mite won't be so easy to spot. Measuring 0.01-0.08 mm their damage is sometimes hard to tell apart. It could be either but the broad mites are more common on peppers than cyclamen mites so I would guess broad mites are more likely to be the culprits on peppers..

Russet mites are bigger than broad mites and cyclamen mites which need high magnification

Russet mites can be visible with magnifyers higer than 10x. They leave a greasy appearance on the leaves then they turn brown and dessicated.
https://www.everwoodfarm.com/Pest_Insect ... road_Mites

The master gardener office recently purchased a digital microscope and camera similar to this one. It is really nice since we can scan the specimen and view it on the computer screen so multiple people can see it at the same time and take a picture of it and send it back to the homeowner if we have their email. We have a microscope too. Isn't this cool!?
https://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.a ... -_-Product
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applestar
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Re: Creature Feature

Nice! I may have to upgrade my microscope.... 8)

So if these are even smaller than russet mites, then the visible-to-naked-eye mite I saw scurrying around should be the predator?

Thanks for all the info details and the links, imafan. I feel like pulling out my old microscope again.... :lol:
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imafan26
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Re: Creature Feature

Predatory mites control other mites and thrips. It is also the reason why pest mites rebound after chemical treatments. Chemicals kill the predators faster than the mites they control. The predatory mites are a little larger than their prey but they will still be barely visible to the naked eye.

https://www.naturescontrol.com/thripspredatormites.html
https://www.ipm.ucdavis.edu/PMG/NE/weste ... _mite.html
Attachments
Western predatory mite.  Predatory mites move faster and mouth parts are protruding instead of  pointing down.
Western predatory mite. Predatory mites move faster and mouth parts are protruding instead of pointing down.
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HoneyBerry
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Re: Creature Feature

We used to see these frothed up bugs often when we were kids. We called them Spit Bugs. I think they have another name. I haven't seen any for a long time. We thought the were gross. We'd say "ooooo yuk it's a spit bug".
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imafan26
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Re: Creature Feature

Spittle bugs are the larvae stage of a frog hopper. It is also the stage when they are noticed first. The first time I saw it I thought somebody spit on the plant.

https://www.extension.umn.edu/garden/yar ... pittlebug/
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imafan26
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Re: Creature Feature

Got squash?
Squash and cucurbits are either monoecious plants that have separate male and female flowers on the same plant or gyenecious like cucumbers that can have mostly female flowers. Parthenocarpic plants do not require polination to produce a fruit and they have small seeds. All parthenocarpic fruit are gynecious but all gynecious fruit are not parthenocarpic. Gynecious fruit produce mostly female, but still require anothe plant with male flowers to polinate it to produce fruit.

Some parthenocarpic cucumbers that do not require or want a polinator are Diva, Suyo, Tyria, Tasty Jade, and Socrates.
Parthenocarpic zucchini = Parthenon.

Most of the modern hybrids are gynecious and have mostly female flowers but the packet will usually contain 10% of a polinator variety. To get adequate polination, you would have to hand polinate or plant more seeds.

Male flowers usually appear first to attract the polinators. Most flowers are only open and receptive a few hours and require multiple visits to achieve adequate polination.
While honeybees get most of the credit for polinating most of the crops. The squash bee is a better polinator of cucurbits.
Squash bees have more of a "nose" and hairs on their legs to carry pollen instead of pollen sacs. While they are gregarious, they are not social bees and live as solitary bees usually nesting in the ground near squash plants. They are going to be active in the mornings when the flowers are open and will sometimes be found napping in the flowers later in the day.

https://www.fs.fed.us/wildflowers/pollin ... bees.shtml
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Solitary squash bee
Solitary squash bee
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Re: Creature Feature

Thank you so much for posting about the squash bee. We have tons of honey bees who visit my garden and flowers, but I just assumed that I had never seen one of those fellows. And wouldn't you know that the very next morning I happened to look in a newly opened squash blossom and what did I see, but a squash bee! I'm learning so much about beneficial insects from this site, so thank you.

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Re: Creature Feature

Anyone know what this one is?

This is magnified. It was maybe an inch long, like about twice as long and wide as a Japanese beetle.

It looks dark in the picture, but I think if light were on it, it would have some shiny, metallic bits. It was crawling up a corn stalk.
bug on corn.jpg
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Re: Creature Feature

Definitely a beetle of some sort isn't it? It has a distinctive wing contour over the abdomen that looks kind of metallic green, so my first guess is probably not it, but my first thought was a female stag beetle.

Just in case, here is a link I found:

Family Lucanidae - Stag Beetles - BugGuide.Net
https://bugguide.net/node/view/3103
Scroll down to this section: Illustrated Key to North American Genera adapted from(3)

Are there scarab beetles in North America?
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Re: Creature Feature

Perhaps either a:

Green June Beetle (can also be brown or black): https://www.insectidentification.org/ins ... une-Beetle

OR a

Sugar cane beetle: https://ipm.ncsu.edu/AG271/corn_sorghum/ ... eetle.html

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Re: Creature Feature

green June beetle it is! I think this one would have looked a lot more green if the sun had been on it. Thanks KG!!!

I was planning to do milky spore this fall against the Japanese beetles; turns out these guys are susceptible to it also.
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Re: Creature Feature

I'm confused though. Look this thing up and I see it called June beetle or June bug.

What I always called June bug is this one:

Image

You can't tell from the picture, but it is much smaller, the same size about as the Japanese beetle.

When I did a google image search on June bug, both that one and the one I have now came up:
Image


This is a quote from the page that the picture came from:

June Bugs are emerging as summer's warmth is finally upon us. The green June beetle, only one of some 300 species of scarab beetles found in Southern California, flashes a metallic green underbelly as its buzzes about erratically. The mature scarabs flying about have spent at least a year underground in larval form munching at the roots of lawns or your favorite ornamental plants.

https://www.sandiegoreader.com/weblogs/o ... -emerging/#

uses June Bug and green June beetle interchangeably.

This guy is WAY bigger than the little brown ones. And all of a sudden from seeing the first one, I have a swarm of them! The air is full of them! I have never seen anything like it... I think that is goodbye garden as they are leaf chewers!
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Re: Creature Feature

Well, some good news on the green June beetle front. The swarm only lasted about three days. Since then I've seen the occasional one, but not tons. And today I found one, with one wing all deformed and its abdomen showing where it would normally be covered. The abdomen was pulsating. Since it is usually covered, I don't know if that is normal, but I sort of thought maybe it was full of parasites inside. I looked and couldn't find any mention of anything that parasitizes the adults (as opposed to the grubs), so maybe not.... But anyway, for whatever reason, it was in bad shape.

And incidentally I was wrong. The Japanese beetles are leaf chewers. These guys just attack ripe fruits.
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Re: Creature Feature

So my kale has been chewed up so much that there's little for me to harvest, even though it is growing very well. Leaves quickly get skeletonized.

I thought slugs, but I treated twice with Sluggo and twice with DE to no avail. I found one little cabbage worm, but never any others and no frass, etc.

Today I found this guy on it:
IMG_0780.JPG
anyone recognize him?

I only found one of him. I also found one leaf footed bug nymph on a different bed, near a squash plant. I dispatched it, but have to assume where there is one there are a lot more.
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Re: Creature Feature

It is a harlequin stink bug. Harlequin bugs are important pests of cabbages in the Southern states. The lifecycle is complete in 50-70 days and consists of 3 stages. Eggs look like black and white kegs standing up on a leaf. There are 5 or 6 nymphal instars and each one looks a little different in pattern until around 7-9 weeks before they are mature. They gradually look more like the adult with each molt.

Plants commonly attacked by the harlequin bug include such crucifers as horseradish, cabbage, cauliflower, collards, mustard, Brussels sprouts, turnip, kohlrabi and radish. In the absence of these favorite hosts, tomato, potato, eggplant, okra, bean, asparagus, beet, weeds, fruit trees and field crops may be eaten.

Hand picking works and this is a good time to break out the dust buster since as you have noted where there's one....
Kaolin clay may be helpful.

Stink bugs in general, I find hard to control. Thankfully I do have a few birds that eat them and the geckos are good at picking off most of the caterpillars and bugs on my plants.
https://entnemdept.ufl.edu/creatures/veg ... in_bug.HTM
https://www.hobbyfarms.com/12-organic-wa ... in-bugs-3/
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applestar
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Re: Creature Feature

Yep. Harlequin Bugs I sometimes get them in the height of summer -- mid-July to maybe late August -- or after a hurricane remnant sweeps up from the south -- and they are worse than the caterpillars in some ways. I've mentioned them before... I can't recall if I said growing red cabbages and purple Brussels sprouts DID or DID NOT help. :|

Kale will recover once it gets cooler and grow through the winter in milder freeze IF you can keep sufficient plant mass alive until then.
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rainbowgardener
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Re: Creature Feature

OK thanks everyone! Looking it up, you all are right, harlequin stinkbug. I found it on kale and apparently that is one of the places it likes to be.

However, I don't think it is the culprit that is eating holes into my kale to the point of nearly skeletonizing the leaves.

Harlequin like other stinkbugs is piercing/sucking insect not chewing insect. I found this for what harlequin bug damage looks like:
Image

My damage does look like slugs. I was thinking about maybe something else, just because the slug treatments didn't fix the problem. But I need to go out at night with the flashlight and check for them.
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rainbowgardener
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Re: Creature Feature

So my kale devastation is still a mystery. I went out just now at midnight with a flashlight. Looked at every single leaf on every single plant. I spotted one little slug down by the base of one plant, but that was all I found. One little slug surely couldn't be doing all that by himself!? I expected to find it crawling with them....

I also spotted one more unknown bug. This one looked about the size and shape of a black watermelon seed, with two thin horizontal orange lines across its body. Looking at pictures on-line, the closest I found was spittle bug, but I'm not sure that's right and I've not seen any evidence of spittle bugs.

I'll try again with the Sluggo and DE and maybe see if I can buy Neem oil, since this is clearly a leaf chewer of some sort.
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applestar
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Re: Creature Feature

Have you seen any blister beetles? Are your Swiss chard a(and beets) and peppers showing similar chew marks? They came after that mild winter and summer hurricane and did a lot of mischief in my garden. They didn't stay put but moved from plant to plant, but they favored beets and S. Chard and turned them into lace. The ones I got were dark grey with black abdomen. Don't touch with bare hands if you see them!
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applestar
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Re: Creature Feature

I couldn't resist picking these elderflowers even though they don't make up a full recipe's worth. There were persistent bumble bee and this -- wasp? -- on one of the flowers. At first the wasp looked like a yellow jacket, so I was very careful not to jostle or aggravate it, I put the umbels on my iPad Pro screen and carried to the patio table, then I shot them off -- iPad screen is anti-static (?) and things slide off easily. The bumble bee took off in a huff, but this wasp stayed even after.

I'm sure it's not a yellow jacket. Is it a pollen wasp? I'm trying to ID by the pattern on its thorax and wasp images don't match. Looking at its head, does it look more like a fly to you despite the wings and rest of the features?

Image
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rainbowgardener
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Re: Creature Feature

applestar wrote:Have you seen any blister beetles? Are your Swiss chard a(and beets) and peppers showing similar chew marks? They came after that mild winter and summer hurricane and did a lot of mischief in my garden. They didn't stay put but moved from plant to plant, but they favored beets and S. Chard and turned them into lace. The ones I got were dark grey with black abdomen. Don't touch with bare hands if you see them!
Nope have not seen blister beetles and my stand of swiss chard in the same bed with the kale is UN-touched! Not a mark on it, while the kale is being chewed to death.
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imafan26
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Re: Creature Feature

Centipedes are not something you want to run into. They have a face and a body that only another centipede can appreciate.
The live in damp undisturbed areas in the garden under leaves, mulch, rocks, rotten logs, and sometimes, invade the home living in bathrooms, closets, and basements where there is some dampness. Although, they are scary to most people; have a nasty bite and can run very fast. They are beneficial insects. They consume roaches, spiders, and other small insects. Most of the time they stay outside but in the heat of summer water may be scarcer so they come inside. Centipedes are reclusive and rarely come out. If there are a lot of centipedes in the house, there may be a dampness issue in the house that needs to be adressed and you have a lot of other insects in the house. Centipedes would leave if there wasn't anything to eat. So it is a good time to do some summer cleaning put the damp rid in the closets, thin out the clothes and give away the ones you don't need anymore. Clean out the cabinets and shelves. Check for leaks and caulk around the house to keep pests from coming into the house. Fix the screens, clean out the basement , under sinks, and start putting out baits for roaches and ants. It doesn't hurt to put a stopper in the tub and sink drains at night to keep the roaches from crawling out of them. Put some bleach or pinesol in the toilet overnight. Make sure pet dishes are washed and removed after they finish eating. And take out the trash if you have food in it or better yet have a separate pail for food trash and take that out either to the compost bin or to the trash bin. In my case, the city only collects trash once a week so I freeze all my food scraps that I am going to toss out until garbage day. It keeps the smell and the vermin out of my trash can.

https://ipm.ucanr.edu/PMG/PESTNOTES/pn7472.html
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ButterflyLady29
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Re: Creature Feature

applestar, it's a hoverfly of some type. I thought I had found it but the one I thought it was lives in a small area in England.

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applestar
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Re: Creature Feature

I think you are correct. It's much larger -normal wasp and bee size- than the tiny syrphid/hover fly I'm used to seeing though.
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imafan26
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Re: Creature Feature

White flies
White flies are very hard to get rid of. They have multiple hosts and since the adults flit around it is hard to kill them all with contact sprays like soaps or oils. Using more toxic chemicals kills off beneficial insects faster than pests so that opens up a whole other can of worms upsetting the balance between predator and prey which will have ripple effects down the line.

The best defense is still a strong garden patrol
Mealybug destroyer larvae (the one that looks like a giant mealy bug), other lady bugs, and the whitefly parasitic wasp really loves to eat white flies.
I found that mealy bug destroyers really like corn. Even though my garden is small, I really like corn too. The corn attracts the mealy bug destroyers that come after the aphids in the corn and their larvae consume the whiteflies on other plants in my garden as a bonus. To keep them coming, I have to avoid spraying toxic chemicals instead
Hibiscus, plumeria, chili peppers, and some weeds are white fly magnets. I scout my hibiscus regularly because it is usually the first to be attacked. Since I don't want to get rid of the hibiscus or plumeria, I usually cut back the hibiscus if it is heavily infested and The plumeria and peppers gets blasted with a jet of water twice a day under the leaves. It does not killl the adults but I am able to dislodge the eggs and young and reduce the population enough for the garden patrol to manage the rest. I check under leaves of other plants like the gardenia and citrus trees (usually they have sooty mold if the populations are large and they get a trim to open up the air flow in the canopy and to remove the most infested branches as well as the water blast.
White flies are cyclical. There are always some of them around but they get especially troublesome every two years. When there are a lot of white flies around the predator population also rises and they start consuming the whiteflies. When the predator population gets very large, there aren't many whiteflies around so the predator population starts to decline. When most of the predators have fallen to their lowest levels, the white flies make a comeback.

Keeping the plants healthy by providing the right amount or air, water, nutrition, and light that they need makes them more resilient to survive. Heavily infested weak plants should be rogued out, bagged and trashed. Plants should be inspected weekly especially when they are actively growing for any kind of pests and appropriate measures should be started early to control their numbers while preserving the beneficial insects. Planting nectar and pollen plants to attract beneficial insects as well as providing habitat by planting trees and shrubs and providing nesting places and water.
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imafan26
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Re: Creature Feature

IPM = Integrated pest management. The goal of integrated pest management is to grow healthy plants by managing the ecosystem using a common sense approach to pest management. IPM focuses on long-term prevention of pests or their damage through a combination of techniques such as biological control, habitat manipulation, modification of cultural practices, and use of resistant varieties.

1. Plant selection: Choosing the right plant for the right place
2. Optimize plant health. Healthy plants make poor targets. Make sure plants get enough water, nutrition, air, light and are suitable for your location.
3. Scouting plants and look for early signs of pests or disease
4. Identify the problem and select the least toxic intervention (Hand picking, pruning out diseased parts or removal of unhealthy plants, water to blast off pests and watering at the proper time of day to reduce disease. Select resistant cultivars. Make sure plants are spaced properly and are appropriate for the location, soil type, light and plant at the appropriate time of year. Light and reflective mulches can deter some night feeding insects. Sometimes planting slightly off season and rotating plant families if you have problems can reduce pest pressure. Select plants that grow well together and interplant with hosts for beneficial insects. Use the least toxic methods that works. If you must use chemicals, read and follow the label instructions and try to isolate the plants to minimize impacts on beneficial insects ( remove buds at least 2 days before treatment and continue to disbud while the chemicals are active. Most beneficial insects feed on nectar and pollen. Take preventive measures to control fungal diseases in humid and wet conditions.
5. Set a threshold for treatment. Give the predators time to control the pests. If you see pests are parasitized, do not treat.
Tolerate some damage, predators will leave if there is nothing for them to eat.
6. Build up a healthy garden patrol by providing habitat and nectar and pollen plants as well as host plants, nesting areas and water.

https://www3.epa.gov/pestwise/htmlpubli ... sheet.html
https://www.ctahr.hawaii.edu/sustainag/w ... ponics.pdf
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applestar
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Re: Creature Feature

I found stinkbug eggs ALL OVER the garden today :evil:

Adults -- Currently mostly running into smallish brown colored stinkbug with sharply pointy shoulders. I always hold them in my hand to verify the proboscis, but I needed a refresher on how to tell them apart from Brown Soldier Bugs. I had forgotten about the line/spot where the wings meet at the tip. Must remember that.

Image
https://wvutoday.wvu.edu/resources/1/1309285290.jpg
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applestar
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Re: Creature Feature

Here are those "stinkbug" eggs -- I assumed Brown Marmorated because those are the resident No1 population, but they could be Squashbug's or something else's. (We'll never know since these at least have been drowned in soapy water :twisted: )

Image

...and THESE are Harlequin Stinkbug eggs. They are such jokers, even their eggs are irritatingly intriguing and they look like they are giggling.... :evil:

Image
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rainbowgardener
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Re: Creature Feature

OMG ... "I always hold them in my hand" !! I have gotten a lot more bug tolerant over the years of gardening, but that one gives me the shivers just to think about.

Kudos! I do admire the attitude of acceptance of nature and being a part of things that that takes.
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