Every veggie garden enthusiast deals with pest issues from time to time, and finding out how to manage the little leaf-munching menaces without using artificial chemical pesticides is an important action in growing a healthy, productive garden. To help gardeners with this job, we’ve put together this easy-to-use guide to veggie garden insects
To make our guide to vegetable garden bugs both easy to use and uncomplicated, we’ve consisted of vital details about 15 of the most common– and damaging– veggie garden insects and great deals of details on how to safeguard your garden from the damage they cause. As a last resort, we have actually likewise included our preferred natural product controls for each garden bug. Utilize this guide to vegetable garden pests to grow a high-yielding, beautiful, natural veggie garden.
Identification: Aphids are small, pear-shaped pests. They can be green, yellow, brown, red, gray, or black. There are both non-winged and winged aphids, depending on their types and life-stage.
Plants impacted: Aphids feed upon numerous species of possible host vegetable plants, consisting of tomatoes, lettuce, kale, and cabbage. Their respected nature makes them sure-finds on every guide to veggie garden insects.
Description of damage: Aphids suck plant juices, triggering distorted, warped development. They typically feed in large groups on brand-new plant development or leaf undersides.
Preventative steps: Promote useful predatory insects by consisting of a lot of flowering plants with little flowers in the garden. Discover more about using useful insects as bug control here .
Physical controls: You can remove aphids from plants by spraying them off with a sharp stream of water from the pipe. Hand-squishing aphids is simple, or cover plants with drifting row cover to safeguard them from insects.
Recognition: Adult asparagus beetles are 1/4 \u2033 long. They’re black with velvety yellow areas and a red mark right behind their head. The larvae are army-green, grub-like animals with a black head.
Plants affected: Asparagus beetles only feed on asparagus plants.
Description of damage Both larvae and grownups chew asparagus spears and ferns. Severe invasions can trigger complete browning of the foliage and a decrease in the vigor of the next year’s crop.
Preventative measures Adult asparagus beetles overwinter in garden particles, so cut down ferns and clean up fallen leaves in the asparagus patch in the autumn.
Physical controls Protect emerging spears with. drifting row cover. and keep it in location throughout the harvesting season. Try to find small, dark eggs on spears and hand crush them. When on the ground, spiders and other useful insects will find and consume them, knock the larvae off the plants daily with a soft broom–.
Organic item controls: Neem. — or spinosad-based items are reliable controls suggested here in our guide to veggie garden bugs.
In the following video, our horticulturist shows you what asparagus beetles appear like in all stages of their lifecycle. Plus, she offers pointers on how to eliminate asparagus beetles naturally..
Recognition Imported cabbage worm caterpillars are 1 \u2033 light and long green with a faint yellow stripe down the back. Grownups are white to yellowish-white butterflies with up to 4 black spots on the wings.
Plants impacted All members of the cabbage household, including cabbage, broccoli, kale, cauliflower, radish, turnip, kohlrabi, and Brussels sprouts can come down with cabbage worms.
Description of damage Cabbage worm caterpillars chew holes in leaves and flower clusters. If invasion is extreme, they can cause complete defoliation.
Preventative measures Hang birdhouses in garden as birds enjoy consuming cabbage worms.
Physical controls Cover vulnerable plants with. floating row cover. from the time of planting till harvest as host plants do not require to be pollinated to be productive. Hand-picking the caterpillars is likewise effective.
Identification Adult carrot rust flies are really little, shiny black flies with an orange head and legs. The larvae are small, beige-colored maggots. This pest is not found in every guide to vegetable garden insects, it’s ending up being more troublesome for many garden enthusiasts and deserves to be included.
Plants impacted: Adult flies lay eggs near many vegetable crops, including carrots, celeriac, parsley, celery, parsnips, and others.
Description of damage Carrot rust fly larvae eat crop roots, leaving tunnels and scarring behind. As the season progresses, the damage grows more prominent. Roots filled with tunnels and scars are the outcome.
Preventative procedures Adult carrot rust flies are poor fliers so rotate crops every season. Try to choose a site downwind from in 2015’s crop area. Also, wait to plant carrots till late May or early June as that’s off the breeding cycle of this bug.
Physical controls Keep carrots and other susceptible crops covered with. drifting row cover. from the time of planting up until harvesting day. Female flies find their host plants through smell, so inter-planting carrots and other crops with onions, garlic, and chives might help limit carrot rust fly egg laying.
Organic product controls Beneficial nematodes launched into the soil near the carrot crop aid control the larvae. Types of nematodes in the genus. Steinernema. are most reliable. Apply in the spring according to the package instructions.
Identification Adult Colorado potato beetles are 1/3 \u2033 long, rounded, with black and tan striped wing covers. The larvae are 1/2 \u2033 chubby, reddish-purple with rows of black dots on the side.
More Gardening Ideas & Resources
Plants affected All members of the tomato household are possible hosts, including potatoes, eggplants, peppers, tomatillos, and tomatoes.
Description of damage Both adult and larvae Colorado potato beetles skeletonize foliage all the way down to the leaf veins. They’re often discovered towards the top of the plant.
Preventative steps Adult beetles overwinter in garden particles, so clean up the garden and rotate crops every year.
Physical controls Cover plants with. drifting row cover. and leave in location until harvest. You can likewise hand-pick both the adults and the larvae.
Recognition Adult cucumber beetles measure 1/4 \u2033 long at maturity. They are intense yellow with stripes or areas, depending upon the types. Their larvae live underground and are seldom seen.
Plants impacted All members of the cucumber family are hosts, including melons, cucumbers, pumpkins, gourds, and squash. Cucumber beetles are likewise in some cases discovered on corn, beets, beans, and other vegetables.
Description of damage Adult beetles make small, ragged holes in the flowers and leaves, and transmit. bacterial wilt.
Preventative steps Only plant bacterial wilt-resistant cultivars, or plant cucumber beetle-resistant ranges such as ‘Saladin’, ‘Little Leaf 19’, and ‘Gemini’ cucumbers, muskmelons, butternut-type squashes, and squashes in the types group Cucurbita moschata as they are less preferred by the beetles.
Physical controls As with many other bugs noted in this guide to veggie garden insects, cucumber beetles can be kept off of plants by covering them with. floating row cover however in this case, you’ll need to eliminate the cover when the plants come into flower to enable pollination. Mulch vulnerable crops with loose products like straw or hay to avoid egg laying.
Organic item controls Spinosad-based natural pesticides work versus the beetles, but planting resistant varieties will constantly be your best line of defense.
Identification Adult cutworms are gray or brown night-flying moths. Their larval caterpillars depend on 2 \u2033 long and curl into a tight C-shape when disturbed. The caterpillars are found in the leading few inches of soil, and they can be green, yellow, brown, or gray, depending on the species.
Plants impacted Any young seedling is prone, however favorites consist of tomatoes, broccoli, kale, cabbage, and others.
Description of damage Cutworms sever seedlings at ground level or girdle them by chewing the outer stem tissue. The presence of wilted or severed seedlings is a clear sign of cutworms.
Preventative steps Crop rotation is essential as is securing the stems of young seedlings at their base with a collar made from a bathroom tissue tube or aluminum foil nestled 1/2 \u2033 into the ground.Tilling the garden in fall to expose pupae to predation and cold temperatures is also helpful.
Physical controls Bait cutworms with cornmeal or wheat bran paced in sunken bowls near susceptible plants; the caterpillars are drawn in to the granules, however can not digest them and pass away.
Identification Extremely little, black or brown beetles, flea beetles are 1/10 \u2033 long. They move very rapidly and hop like a flea.
Plants affected Many different plants are hosts to flea beetles, but favorites consist of radish, potatoes, tomatoes, brassicas, corn, and eggplants.
Description of damage Flea beetles make little, round holes in plant foliage. Their larvae live underground and can consume plant roots, too.
Preventative procedures Practice crop rotation.
Physical controls Location. yellow sticky cards. above plant tops to lure and trap adult flea beetles. Do not use drifting row cover as it can trap freshly emerged flea beetles below it.
Identification Adult leafminers are nondescript flies that do not feed upon plants. Their tiny, green or brown larvae feed inside plant tissues.
Plants affected Different types of leafminers eat different plants, however for this guide to vegetable garden bugs, common host plants consist of spinach, chard, blueberries, beets, and nasturtiums.
Description of damage Leafminer larvae tunnel in between layers of leaf tissue, producing telltale squiggly tunnels and lines on leaves.
Preventative steps Cut off leaves where tunnels exist throughout the growing season and toss them in the trash to prevent another generation. Damage is hardly ever severe enough to trigger damage to the plant.
Physical controls Place. drifting row cover. over vulnerable vegetable crops to avoid grownups from accessing the plants. Consist of lots of blooming herbs in the garden to draw in helpful insects to help manage the leafminers (more on this later).
Organic product controls Because the larvae are between leaf tissue layers, leafminers are hard to control with items. Neem. — and spinosad-based products have some result.
Recognition Adult Mexican bean beetles are copper-colored, ladybug-like beetles with 16 black areas (see lower right image in this post’s featured image). Their larvae are light yellow with soft, bristly spines.
Plants affected All beans, including green, snap, pole, lima, runner, and soy, can host these beetles and their larvae.
Description of damage Grownups and larvae consume leaf tissue down to the veins. Sometimes, they also feed on flowers and bean. The larvae are frequently found on leaf undersides.
Preventative procedures Plant great deals of flowering herbs as they draw in a helpful, predatory wasp that eats the beetle larvae.
Physical controls Cover bean plants with. floating row cover. from the time of germination till flowering.
Organic item controls: Hot pepper wax. and spinosad are both beneficial for the control of Mexican bean beetles.
Recognition Snails and slugs are not pests, but land-dwelling mollusks. Snails have a shell, slugs do not. They can be gray, black, orange, brown, tan, or mottled, and typically leave a slime path behind.
Plants affected Because almost any young seedling is a favorite of these pests, no guide to vegetable garden pests is total without snails and slugs. Slugs and snails feed on various types of plants and vegetables.
Description of damage Snails and slugs leave irregular holes in leaf margins or. They feed during the night or on rainy days, so typically the perpetrator isn’t present throughout the day.
Preventative proceduresWater in the early morning only as slugs and snail choose eating damp foliage. Encourage birds, snakes, frogs, and toads in the garden since all of these critters eat snails and slugs. Copper strips. placed around plants avoid feeding due to a chemical response with the slime produced by slugs and snails.
Physical controls Handpick slugs and drop them into a container of soapy water. Beer traps. Work, however the beer needs to be emptied and filled up daily.
Organic product controlsUse just. slug baits. with the active component of iron phosphate; do not use baits made from metaldehyde or methocarb as both are harmful to pets and other wildlife.
Identification No guide to veggie garden pests is complete without a mention of what’s most likely the hardest veggie insect to control: squash bugs. Adult squash bugs are 5/8 \u2033, dark brown with flattened, oval-shaped bodies. The nymphs are gray and without wings. They typically feed in groups. Squash bug eggs are bronze and laid in groups.
Plants affected All members of the cucumber family come down with squash bugs, including cucumbers, zucchini, squash, melons, and pumpkins.
Description of damage Grownups and nymphs suck plant juices with their needle-like mouthpart. Damaged leaves are mottled with yellow and they eventually turn yellow and die. Plants might turn crispy with a severe invasion.
Preventative measures Plant resistant ranges, turn crops, and utilize trellises to keep the growing vines off the ground.
Physical controls Usage. drifting row covers. from the time of planting until blooming begins. Get rid of egg clusters on a day-to-day basis with a piece of tape; be sure to inspect leaf undersides as that’s where most egg-laying takes place.
Organic item controls Products do not work well on adults, however nymphs can be targeted with. insecticidal soap. or. neem. .
Recognition Adult squash vine borers are red and black moths that appear like large wasps. Their larvae are chubby, white caterpillars found inside the base of squash vines.
Plants impacted All members of the cucumber family are vulnerable, including both summer and winter squash, melons, gourds, and pumpkins. Cucumbers are rarely affected.
Description of damage The presence of borers is typically kept in mind as a rapid wilting of the plant. Search for hole in the stem tissue near ground level for confirmation.
Preventative procedures Wrap a strip of aluminum foil around the base of the plant right after the very first true leaves appear to secure the base of the plant from egg-laying women (. more on this method here. ).
Physical controls Cover plants with. floating row cover. not long after planting and leave in place up until blooming begins. If borer hole is found before plant dies, slice open the stem, dig out the borer, and cover the cut with a mound of soil.
Organic product controls Inject. Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt). into the borer hole with a. needle-less syringe . You can likewise spray insecticidal soap on base of stem weekly to smother any eggs.
Recognition Adult hornworms are large, nighttime moths with brown/gray wings. Hornworm caterpillars are green with white stripes or Vs on the side of their body and a soft horn or spike extending from their posterior.
Plants impacted Members of the tomato family, consisting of tomatoes, potatoes, peppers, eggplants, and tobacco, are host plants.
Description of damage Tobacco and tomato hornworms leave dark pellets of excrement behind. Damage is eaten leaves, typically towards the top of the plants. The caterpillars feed during the night and shelter in the foliage throughout the day.
Preventative measures Plant lots of blooming herbs with tiny flowers near vulnerable plants as these flowers attract small parasitic cotesia wasps that utilize hornworms as hosts for their young, eventually bringing death to the hornworm (more on utilizing beneficial pests to manage bugs in a bit). This is a great way to prevent all of the insects gone over in this guide to vegetable garden bugs.
Physical controls Check plants for hornworms on a routine basis and handpick, but do not damage any hornworms that have the white, rice-like cocoons of parasitic wasps hanging from their backs.
Organic product controls Spray products are seldom needed as handpicking is more effective. If needed,. Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt). and spinosad are reliable.
Recognition Whiteflies are tiny, white, moth-like flies. Infested plants are typically coated in sticky honeydew, the excrement of the flies. Whiteflies are often present in big numbers on leaf undersides.
Plants impacted Typical whitefly hosts in the veggie garden consist of sweet potatoes, tomatoes, peppers, citrus, and others.
Description of damage Both whitefly adults and nymphs suck plant juices, triggering weak plants, yellow leaves, wilt, and in extreme cases, leaf drop.
Preventative steps Carefully inspect all new plants for whiteflies before purchasing from a nursery. This is an useful concept for avoiding all of the insects included in this guide to veggie garden insects.
Physical controls Hang. yellow sticky cards. just above plant tops to capture the adult flies and avoid a new generation.
No guide to veggie garden pests would be total without mention of how interplanting your veggie spot with blooming herbs and annuals can assist restrict pest numbers by drawing in the lots of types of useful pests that prey upon garden insects.For more info on how to use these good bugs to battle the bugs in your garden, take a look at. Attracting Beneficial Bugs to Your Garden: A Natural Method to Pest Control. by Savvy Gardening contributor Jessica Walliser.
And, if you have bugs pestering your flower and shrub beds too, we advise a helpful little guidebook called Great Bug, Bad Bug. to help recognize and manage bugs in other parts of the garden.
Article source: https://savvygardening.com/guide-to-vegetable-garden-pests/