purplegardener
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SPIDER MITES HELP!

Well, the webbing has appeared. Which means those tiny bugs are spidermites.

What do i do? scrap the whole thing since everything is going to die? is there a good way to work on ridding myself of them? Spread out some food grade diatomaceous earth? neem?

JONA
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Re: SPIDER MITES HELP!

Once the webbing appears you have a real problem. Purplegardener.
It looks like you'll have to resort to sprays applied with force to try to penetrate the webbing.
The best way to control spider is by biological means but it needs to be started early before webbing appears.
Phytoseiulus persimilis will do the job.
Phytoseiulus. Are very small and are delivered usually in bran . Many thousands in a small pot.
Sprinkle them throughout the plant and they'll do the job.
John

purplegardener
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Re: SPIDER MITES HELP!

Right now the webbing appears to only be in dips in the soil and not on the plants- if I break up the spot where there is webbing and spread the bran that you are talking about around will that help?

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Gary350
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Re: SPIDER MITES HELP!

Caffeine is poison to bugs but will not hurt the plants or people. Make some strong coffee add a few drops of dish soap so coffee spray will stick to the plant leaves then spray the coffee on the under side of your plant leaves. Spray it in the soil see if it works.
Last edited by Gary350 on Mon May 29, 2017 6:41 pm, edited 2 times in total.

JONA
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Re: SPIDER MITES HELP!

I have never heard of spider making webbing in the soil ...so I have doubts that it is red spider.
Hit it with a hose.
Spider mite chew away at the underside of leaves and produces the webbing to protect itself.
Can't see what it would be eating on the ground purplegard
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applestar
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Re: SPIDER MITES HELP!

Webbing over dips in soil really sounds more like ground spiders to me ...not mites.
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purplegardener
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Re: SPIDER MITES HELP!

but there are tiny mite bugs ALL OVER. but not on the plants? the bugs seem to only be interested in the soil really, which is weird. And there are a LOT of flies.

I just don't know whats happening. if they arent spidermites, what could they be?

could it be a mold/fungus? i did notice some spots on the soil in the corner of the beds have a greenish tinge.

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applestar
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Re: SPIDER MITES HELP!

Are they too tiny to take pictures? That would help a lot.
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purplegardener
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Re: SPIDER MITES HELP!

IMG_5843.JPG

purplegardener
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Re: SPIDER MITES HELP!

and the flies (the netting is gone now, but theyre still there.)
IMG_5842.JPG

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Re: SPIDER MITES HELP!

I think they must be after something organic in your soil. Spider mites need a 10 times lens to see properly, so they aren't them!
As a matter of interest ...can you count the number of legs on one of those beasties....I have a suspicion they may have eight and be true spiders.
John

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Gary350
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Re: SPIDER MITES HELP!

purplegardener wrote:but the bugs seem to only be interested in the soil really, .
What plants do you see bugs near? You need to determine what type bugs they really are? I often have a problem with bugs attaching the roots of my squash plants. The bugs kill the roots then my squash dies. I have never learned how to get rid of the bugs so I plant new squash every 3 weeks all summer to replace dead plants.
Last edited by Gary350 on Mon May 29, 2017 6:43 pm, edited 1 time in total.

purplegardener
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Re: SPIDER MITES HELP!

the bugs are sort of evenly spread? the flies seem to get on the plants, but the mites are really only on the soil?

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Re: SPIDER MITES HELP!

Do you have organic soil or are you using fish emulsion or manure? The flies will be coming for the fishy smell and the bugs are there to eat whatever is attracted to your decomposing and probably wet soil. They do not look like spider mites, they are too big and if they are not under the leaves of the plants, they probably are different mites.

https://www.massey.ac.nz/~maminor/mites.html
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Gary350
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Re: SPIDER MITES HELP!

Spider mites are not true insects, but are classed as a type of arachnid, relatives of spiders, ticks and scorpions. Adults are reddish brown or pale in color, oval-shaped and very small (1/50 inch long).

Mites live in colonies, mostly on the underside of leaves, and feed by piercing leaf tissue and sucking up the plant fluids. Feeding marks show up as light dots on the leaves. As feeding continues, the leaves turn yellow and may dry up and drop off.

Spider mites are most common in hot, dry conditions, especially where their natural enemies have been killed off by insecticide use. Some of the many species common in North America are predators of the plant-feeding mites, which make up the vast majority. They are also very prolific, which is why heavy infestations often build up unnoticed before plants begin to show damage.

Chemical pesticide use actually encourages the spread of spider mites by killing the beneficial insects that prey on them. Mites are also known to develop quick resistance to various pesticides. For these reasons, it’s important to control mites with effective natural and organic methods.

Management strategies must take into account the fast development time of this pest, especially during warm weather when eggs are laid continuously. Just targeting the adults will do little good if eggs and larvae survive. Repeat treatments are almost always necessary. The use of leaf shines and washes helps control and prevent further infestations.

Pour 2 large heaping tablespoons of Cayenne Pepper into 1 gallon of boiling water. Turn off the heat, stir well, put a lid on the pan let it set until cool. Filter out all solid material that will plug up your sprayer, add enough dish soup to make the liquid stick to plant leaves, spray on the under side of plant leaves.

Determine what type bugs you really have? This might work on your bugs. I have never tried Cayenne Pepper spray has anyone here tried it? I'm not sure I trust Cayenne Pepper it might kill all the plants? Coffee spray seems to work good.

purplegardener
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Re: SPIDER MITES HELP!

My neighbor (who gardens) seems to think they are soil mites, but she also cant figure out why there are so many. She did say that what I thought were webs on the soil was actually a type of fungus and showed me how to turn up the soil (weve had a lot of rain).

She was baffled by the flies. and today we found some tiny grub looking things as well.

I had no idea this would be so hard.

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Re: SPIDER MITES HELP!

IMG_5899.JPG

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applestar
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Re: SPIDER MITES HELP!

OK so I think the little orange/brown thing you are pointing at is fly pupa. The flies could be hatching out of those.

In my garden I'm currently having problems with onion maggots. I had them seriously affect my onion harvest last year -- I was able to salvage the harvest but had to chop and freeze or dehydrate rather than curing and storing whole.

I found them infesting the overwintering Egyptian walking onions and some of the garlic -- fortunately not in the main garlic bed but scattered "volunteers" which are garlic that I failed to harvest for one reason or another last year. I'm afraid to find out if they are in the main garlic bed, and am very concerned about the onions as planted this year.

Onion magggot flies apparently overwinter as pupae.

...but that is only one example of possible flies.

Another nasty one I've had some experience with is cornseed maggot.
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purplegardener
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Re: SPIDER MITES HELP!

I am just feeling like scrapping the whole thing and just giving up :(

pepperhead212
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Re: SPIDER MITES HELP!

Apple,

Another pest that just showed up in our area in 2015, brought in from another country, is the Allium Leafminer (ALM). Your description of the onion maggot reminded me of this. A few gardeners in SE PA as well as MD on another forum had their garlic and onion crops destroyed by the ALM last season; I had no signs of it, but I took prophylactic measures. this year, and covered my garlic and chives, as I do peppers, to prevent pepper maggots. Here is a link:

https://ento.psu.edu/extension/vegetable ... -leafminer
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Re: SPIDER MITES HELP!

I think you need to let the soil dry out. If the plants die it won't be so much from the bugs but from the soil being so wet. You cannot do much about the rain but you can not add to it. Most of the bugs that are there look like nuisance bugs more than things that will harm the plants. Tilling up the soil and adding coarse sand to help drainage may help. Keep tilling as often as you can to expose the bugs to light and take out any pupa or decaying matter you find.

I get those kinds of issues when I put in too much compost. The soil stays too wet, the plants die or fail to germinate. It is like picking up mud and it is water logged and dense. I would see white fungus growing in the soil. And it usually smells pretty bad. I usually have to spread it out in the sun to let it dry and then I usually use it for fill. I don't try to do compost or manure in pots anymore and I don't add more than 4 inches to the garden at any one time.
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applestar
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Re: SPIDER MITES HELP!

Thanks pepperhead212. Definitely sounds like that might be what is causing the problem for my onions and garlic. I'm going to start another thread so we can discuss this more.

Purplegardener -- don't give up. We don't know what exactly you have yet. I'm sorry I jumped in with descriptions of pests I had on my mind. There are many species of flies. Some are even beneficial - examples are fly predator flies that control blood sucking/biting barn flies or tachnid flies that parasitize caterpillars (though they sometimes also parasitize desirable species). And mites that are visible to unaided eyes are often predatory mites or not mites at all but baby spiders from a mass hatching. So they could all be part of your beneficial Garden Patrol.

Gardening is often trial and error. Go ahead and try -- report back and we could work out any problems together. :bouncey: :wink:
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