SR Tom
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Posts: 1
Joined: Fri Jul 13, 2012 7:26 pm
Location: Santa Rosa, California

Help! -- Whitefly on my basil and oregano

Hi all,

I'm new to this forum so please forgive me if this topic has been raised before.

I have two questions about a whitefly infestation on my basil and oregano.

1. Are the leaves still edible (many have that silvery "honeydew" slime on them) if I wash them carefully before ingesting?

2. I managed to keep the whitefly numbers down for a while through a combination of blasting them off with a fairly strong water spray and applying a dish soap spray -- but they're back. How can I get rid of them for good, without resorting to drastic measures such as simply dumping the plants and starting over?

Thank you in advance for any advice!

SR Tom

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Senior Member
Posts: 146
Joined: Wed Apr 20, 2011 9:41 pm
Location: Milwaukee, Wisconsin

Ugh. I feel for you-- a few years ago my garden got whiteflies, and they are such a pain.

1.) I still ate the herbs from my garden. I think as long as you wash them, you should be fine.

2.) Good luck. Someone had recommended "Safer" brand insecticidal soap to me. I bought 4 bottles, and sprayed every surface of every leaf of all of my herbs (this took hours) every day for the first 4 days or so, then twice weekly for abour 4 weeks, repeating if it rained, and it never got rid of them. At the end of all that, they were still going strong. I also heard you can make a sticky trap by placing packing tape sticky-side-out over something yellow, but that never caught a single fly.

I never got rid of my whitefly infestation. Winter hit, and that was it. It was after that year that I switched to doing every plant from seed.

If anyone has any suggestions that have actually worked for them, I would love to hear it.

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