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Garden Talk: 2009's most menacing or troublesome pest for you

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NorthernSeasons
Bozeman, MT
(Zone 4b)

September 30, 2009
8:43 PM

Post #7120913

Mine is the slug--I had no other pests or disease, well, maybe some rabbit damage but the slugs just mowed my beans, broccoli, Brussels sprouts and eggplant. It took me awhile to figure out what was eating everything but once that was determined...wham...I brought out the beer traps and nothing. Not a slug to be found in any one of them. I went back to the books, the friends, the professionals (which I'm embarrassed to say, I'm one of) and realized that I had buried my cups of beer and yeast in the ground thinking that this would entice the scoundrels into the cups. Wrong! They need to climb up the side of the cup/container before they'll make the decision to go for a swim. Of course, by this time the change was done. They seemed to be concentrated in the southwest corner of my enclosed garden. My client, on the opposite side of me (NE corner) had minimal damage. Which beast did you in?

Thumbnail by NorthernSeasons
Click the image for an enlarged view.

pirl
(Arlene) Southold, NY
(Zone 7a)

September 30, 2009
9:13 PM

Post #7121030

Deer are enemy #1 closely followed by slugs. I despise them.

Thumbnail by pirl
Click the image for an enlarged view.

ge1836

ge1836
Pittsford, NY
(Zone 6a)

October 1, 2009
8:41 AM

Post #7122621

all of the above and include Iris borer
NorthernSeasons
Bozeman, MT
(Zone 4b)

October 1, 2009
5:06 PM

Post #7123684

Tell us a little about the Iris Borer--I have irises and would love to know what the damage looks like and what you did to combat them.
Thanks, Dee
motts1
south central, WI
(Zone 5a)

October 1, 2009
5:35 PM

Post #7123758

Japanese beetles and slugs.
NorthernSeasons
Bozeman, MT
(Zone 4b)

October 1, 2009
5:59 PM

Post #7123810

Japanese Beetles, Marcia. What are they attacking in your garden? What are you using to control them? Thanks, Dee

ge1836

ge1836
Pittsford, NY
(Zone 6a)

October 1, 2009
7:39 PM

Post #7124084

The borer gets into the rizome and disolves it.
You will see a shell of a rizome in early spring and it will have little holes in it.
OHHHH and NO flowers or leaves
We use a Bonide for Borers early in spring spray everything

This message was edited Oct 1, 2009 3:39 PM
lovetropics
Scottsdale, AZ
(Zone 9b)

October 1, 2009
10:54 PM

Post #7124602

pack rats, pack rats and pack rats.
NorthernSeasons
Bozeman, MT
(Zone 4b)

October 1, 2009
11:54 PM

Post #7124784

I remember my mother calling me a pack rat; so this is a real animal? What does it do and is it a real rat?
lovetropics
Scottsdale, AZ
(Zone 9b)

October 2, 2009
1:09 AM

Post #7125103

I think they are also called desert rats. They look like rats and come up through the ground from underground tunnels(you will see holes in the ground). They take everything(pieces of plants, pieces of cushion, pieces of wood, pieces of wires...etc) into their tunnels and leave some in exchange. The stuff they leave for me are pieces of cacti..etc. This year they stole all of my plant tags(written on plastic large sized plant tags) and took them into their nest that they built in my Barbque. They can also get into garage and set up their homes in car and chew the car labels etc. Nuisance and they also have their favorite plants to chew on and eat up. I try to work around them but lost tons of plants/furniture cushions to them.
NorthernSeasons
Bozeman, MT
(Zone 4b)

October 2, 2009
2:45 AM

Post #7125599

lovetropics--What are their favorite plants? Do they appear to collect them for food, for fragrance, nest building because of plant color? Any ideas?

ge1836

ge1836
Pittsford, NY
(Zone 6a)

October 2, 2009
8:42 AM

Post #7126035

HolyCow now crows foraging for stuff wont bother me so much.
What a pest
pirl
(Arlene) Southold, NY
(Zone 7a)

October 2, 2009
11:33 AM

Post #7126172

I always thought of it as a phrase and never knew there was such a thing as pack rats.
lovetropics
Scottsdale, AZ
(Zone 9b)

October 2, 2009
2:18 PM

Post #7126608

I wish I knew what they don't like :).
They love bulbs--so I started to put in poisonous bulbs such as amaryllis. They stay away from the bulbs but eat the shoots. The bulbs will eventually die because the shoot keeps getting eaten up.
They eat veggies/herbs. The herbs they don't eat are the ones I have such as mint, organo, thyme.
I put in one plant first. If they don't eat that plant, then I put in more plants from that category. They don't eat cannas so I have several species of cannas.
They did not eat jasmines so I added more species of jasmines. Stinckers ate them up this spring. No winning with these.
NorthernSeasons
Bozeman, MT
(Zone 4b)

October 2, 2009
6:28 PM

Post #7127508

Stinckers? Is this another rodent?
lovetropics
Scottsdale, AZ
(Zone 9b)

October 2, 2009
6:35 PM

Post #7127539

this is what they look like
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pack_rat
NorthernSeasons
Bozeman, MT
(Zone 4b)

October 3, 2009
2:59 AM

Post #7129219

lovetropics--Very cool article.

ge1836

ge1836
Pittsford, NY
(Zone 6a)

October 3, 2009
8:21 AM

Post #7129794

We dont have em, just moles and voles
JasperDale
Long Beach, CA
(Zone 10a)

October 4, 2009
5:12 AM

Post #7132623

whitefly whitefly and more whitefly

ge1836

ge1836
Pittsford, NY
(Zone 6a)

October 4, 2009
9:54 AM

Post #7132864

add slugs to my list
venu209
Jersey Shore, NJ
(Zone 7a)

October 4, 2009
12:22 PM

Post #7133009

That is a fascinating article about the pack rats. It's too bad they're a pest in the garden and home, because their cleverness is admirable.
JasperDale
Long Beach, CA
(Zone 10a)

October 4, 2009
4:38 PM

Post #7133677

Indeed ! Well said !
theDaveUSA
Merlin, OR
(Zone 7a)

October 5, 2009
1:47 PM

Post #7136733

Have you tried Bubblegum for the pack rats? I think Bazooka works better than Bubblicious. If your not into killing them then maybe live traps. (if they don't steal them also)
lovetropics
Scottsdale, AZ
(Zone 9b)

October 5, 2009
4:27 PM

Post #7137363

I have read somewhere that they don't like Mint. Interesting the herbs that they did not touch are in my mint bed. I will try putting mint branches in their holes and see what happens. I am not fond of traps.

Calif_Sue

Calif_Sue
Northern California
United States
(Zone 9a)


October 6, 2009
7:30 AM

Post #7140159

Slugs and snail, (and not puppy dog tails) and a rat that crosses the wires each night to eat an orange from my tree, leaving the empty shell for me to collect each morning, ugh! Begging DH to bait a trap.

Sometimes people can be menacing or troublesome pests (oh you know you were thinking of it! :-) )

edited for spelling


This message was edited Oct 6, 2009 7:05 AM
pirl
(Arlene) Southold, NY
(Zone 7a)

October 6, 2009
11:34 AM

Post #7140347

My neighbor resembles your last remark, Sue!

Can you wrap the oranges in netting (like bird netting) or onion bags or old nylons?
ButterflyChaser
Northeast, AR
(Zone 7a)

October 6, 2009
1:09 PM

Post #7140562

Leaf rollers. They only infest my cannas, but I have lots of cannas. They sew the leaves shut. You can actually see the threads on the rolled up leaves. They lay their eggs inside. They hatch into ugly caterpillars and eat the epidermis of the foliage. So you end up with rotten-looking shredded leaves. It's almost impossible to keep up with them. I unroll the leaves and feed the cats to my fish, but "Mama" comes back and starts in again with her "fly-by-night" attacks. After a while, I just give up. So right now, most of my cannas look like crap. Surprisingly, a couple of cultivars seem to resist the leaf rollers. Wish they all did! Even thunbergis bacillis isn't quite effect on this little buggers.

Below is Tama Tulipa who seems to deter the leaf rollers somehow. Not a scratch on her.

Thumbnail by ButterflyChaser
Click the image for an enlarged view.

Calif_Sue

Calif_Sue
Northern California
United States
(Zone 9a)


October 6, 2009
2:10 PM

Post #7140696

The orange tree is too huge, probably 15 ft tall and as wide or wider, and covered with oranges. If I was able to wrap from the top, the rat could climb it from underneath going up the trunk. And he's nervy enough to often sit in one of the hanging pots I have under the tree eating his fruit and leaving behind the rind and his droppings on the plants.
pirl
(Arlene) Southold, NY
(Zone 7a)

October 6, 2009
2:17 PM

Post #7140717

Rats on rats!
gardengus
Flora, IN
(Zone 5a)

October 6, 2009
2:30 PM

Post #7140754

That article on the rats was great.They look like the gerbils sold in pet stores.
Said they like shiny things , what about a package of sequins or shinny confetti, do you think it would keep them busy enough to leave some things to you?
I know that sounds silly but I am big on distraction and redirection.
lovetropics
Scottsdale, AZ
(Zone 9b)

October 6, 2009
4:20 PM

Post #7141188

Hi Gardengus,
I can try the sequins.
I have a dry river bed and I threw some blue marbles(from craft stores) to make it look like water. Now all the marbles are gone and I think packrats took them.
NorthernSeasons
Bozeman, MT
(Zone 4b)

October 6, 2009
8:32 PM

Post #7141962

I wish my slugs were as entertaining as your pack rats. I love the idea getting stuff in exchange for what they're taking even though the 'exchange' items are probably not of the same value.
lovetropics
Scottsdale, AZ
(Zone 9b)

October 6, 2009
8:54 PM

Post #7142025

NorthernSeasons, it would have been perfect if I like cacti, pieces of broken stems..etc.LOL:)
bluepoppy
Landisburg, PA
(Zone 6a)

October 18, 2009
9:26 PM

Post #7183235

slugs slugs and more slugs...

ge1836

ge1836
Pittsford, NY
(Zone 6a)

October 19, 2009
9:53 AM

Post #7185208

slugs is it

ge1836

ge1836
Pittsford, NY
(Zone 6a)

October 22, 2009
4:36 PM

Post #7197217

Loving the views of 2 burly cute guys with chainsaws.
They are cutting down the Scotch pine infested with borer.
They called me "mam"

Thumbnail by ge1836
Click the image for an enlarged view.

Meickle2003
Chillicothe, IL
(Zone 6a)

October 22, 2009
4:47 PM

Post #7197237

Hi, I am Mickey and I am new to this site, but was interested in what pests are prominant. For my garden this year it was japanese beatles and bag worms. The beatles were especially hard on the tomatoes and the bag worms are attacking my spruce trees. Does anyone have ane good recommendation about how to get rid of the mature bag worms apart from picking them off? We sprayed with seven for both pests and it worked for the beatles but not the bag worms.
bluepoppy
Landisburg, PA
(Zone 6a)

October 23, 2009
1:51 AM

Post #7199021

you have to spray for the bag worms as soon as they hatch out in the spring..MAy or June...after they get so old spraying will not work...
Meickle2003
Chillicothe, IL
(Zone 6a)

October 23, 2009
3:35 AM

Post #7199367

bluepoppy, thank you for the information. I will have my husband do the spraying early in the spring. Do you know does the cold weather of our winters kill the adult bag worms?
mamasita
Southern Dutchess Co, NY
(Zone 5b)

October 23, 2009
2:00 PM

Post #7200113

I enjoyed your pictures, too, ge1836.
GardenSox
Sacramento, CA
(Zone 9a)

October 27, 2009
11:38 PM

Post #7214971

My own dog. Every time he sees a squirrel he has to try to catch it and it doesn't matter what gets in his way or breaks under his steps. Grrrrr.

Calif_Sue

Calif_Sue
Northern California
United States
(Zone 9a)


November 3, 2009
8:00 PM

Post #7237904

I said slugs earlier but here's another that I detest, earwigs!

Thumbnail by Calif_Sue
Click the image for an enlarged view.

pirl
(Arlene) Southold, NY
(Zone 7a)

November 3, 2009
10:45 PM

Post #7238477

Agreed! Slugs are so slow and earwigs so fast and yet so sneaky. Both are so destructive.

ge1836

ge1836
Pittsford, NY
(Zone 6a)

November 3, 2009
11:05 PM

Post #7238535

I found my cat resting on a half filled coleus cuttings tray.
Nothing wa hurt but it explains why a few of the cells were packed down
mamasita
Southern Dutchess Co, NY
(Zone 5b)

November 4, 2009
12:40 AM

Post #7238851

Deer. You all know why.

ge1836

ge1836
Pittsford, NY
(Zone 6a)

November 4, 2009
9:44 AM

Post #7239811

I think he walks across the tray to get to the dresser,must think its a garden.
stormyla
Norristown, PA
(Zone 6b)

November 4, 2009
5:34 PM

Post #7240912

Normally, I would say it is the voles, but not this year. I have to agree with most of you that the slugs and earwigs were really bad. They started eating very early this year and nothing seemed to slow them down.

In the MidAtlantic, Japanese Beetles were almost non existant this year, which is very strange. The Cicadas and June Bugs were very light this year too. But the locusts were unbelievably noisy, more than I can ever remember. Some days I had to go inside, they gave me such a headache and you could still hear them in the closed air conditioned house.

ge1836

ge1836
Pittsford, NY
(Zone 6a)

November 4, 2009
5:43 PM

Post #7240943

UGG
rainy_jane
Hanson, KY
(Zone 6a)

November 9, 2009
3:56 PM

Post #7255983

Japenese Beetle's...errrr I hate these horrible, horrible little ugly good for nothing bugs.
They destroy everything in sight...especially my roses! Seems like nothing works on them or it works for awhile and they get used to it.

Jane
HelenVT
Charlotte, VT

November 11, 2009
2:02 AM

Post #7261754

I have problems with with mice and chipmunks. They ate all my strawberries, got a few potatoes, dug up and ate all my siberica bulbs. I found some of their holes and put poison down them. I'm sure they had a thousand babies before I killed a couple.
pollyk
Hannibal, NY
(Zone 6a)

November 11, 2009
2:15 AM

Post #7261806

Rabbits here. They are chewing the leaves of my Japanese and siberian irises down to about two inches. In the spring I'm going to spray the iris leaves with hot pepper spray, and if that doesn't work I'm going with the water spraying scarecrow. I really don't want to hurt the little guys, but the irises need their leaves for food.
stormyla
Norristown, PA
(Zone 6b)

November 11, 2009
2:47 AM

Post #7261914

I hate it when the bunnies chew your Asiatic & Oriental lillies off at ground level and then leave the giant lily stalk laying on the ground with all of it's lovely buds intact.
pollyk
Hannibal, NY
(Zone 6a)

November 11, 2009
2:55 AM

Post #7261937

Yes.

But aren't they such cute little guys?
stormyla
Norristown, PA
(Zone 6b)

November 11, 2009
3:16 AM

Post #7262013

Yes, they are. For some reason, I had an inordinate amount of them this year. But I really didn't have too much damage from them, at least not that I noticed. They were in the beds every day, whenever I walked through, they'd go running. They were smaller bunnies than normal. Here, one of them confused my Bergenia with a cabbage! Guess they do look a lot alike

Thumbnail by stormyla
Click the image for an enlarged view.

ge1836

ge1836
Pittsford, NY
(Zone 6a)

November 11, 2009
9:44 AM

Post #7262586

We have a cat that keeps the rabbit population down to a minimum.
Something was eatinh JI new plants, I sprinkled cayenne pepper around each plant, it worked.
pirl
(Arlene) Southold, NY
(Zone 7a)

November 11, 2009
12:46 PM

Post #7262753

A vole got 9 JI stalks, nipped right at ground level. A neighborhood cat got the vole.
stormyla
Norristown, PA
(Zone 6b)

November 11, 2009
12:49 PM

Post #7262766

There is justice!
venu209
Jersey Shore, NJ
(Zone 7a)

November 11, 2009
12:52 PM

Post #7262769

My bunnies love crocus. They don't bother anything else so I'm ok with the crocus loss. Chipmunks, and I have LOTS, don't bother anything except the birdfeeders. I find the chipmunks very entertaining and had a nice display of sunflowers one year due to their efforts.

Thumbnail by venu209
Click the image for an enlarged view.

ge1836

ge1836
Pittsford, NY
(Zone 6a)

November 11, 2009
12:54 PM

Post #7262776

I love a freebie
pirl
(Arlene) Southold, NY
(Zone 7a)

November 11, 2009
1:12 PM

Post #7262819

Me, too! None of the birds or critters ever gave me my most troublesome weeds - I did those all by myself!

The birds gave me cosmos one year and a gorgeous white bleeding heart (right under the huge pine tree in front - wonder how that happened? Ha).

ge1836

ge1836
Pittsford, NY
(Zone 6a)

November 11, 2009
1:33 PM

Post #7262877

My neighbor with the raised bed of Black Raspberries is my worst weed menace.
Thank gawd I am on the otherside from the westerlies that blow thru here.
This is my garden with the raspberry weed bed beyond on the top left

Thumbnail by ge1836
Click the image for an enlarged view.

pirl
(Arlene) Southold, NY
(Zone 7a)

November 11, 2009
1:58 PM

Post #7262960

We had blackberries for 16 years until I ripped them all out two years ago. They would lay down branches in the asparagus patch and root in there. They'd do it everywhere they could. Too much trouble though the blackberries were very good.
pirl
(Arlene) Southold, NY
(Zone 7a)

November 11, 2009
2:08 PM

Post #7262993

The bunnies sometimes eat the crocus foliage but not the crocus flowers and while I always believed if they stripped the foliage the crocuses wouldn't bloom again it doesn't happen that way here. Maybe they gather enough energy before the bunnies find them.
stormyla
Norristown, PA
(Zone 6b)

November 11, 2009
8:10 PM

Post #7264374

Pirl, And I thought that it was the voles. Maybe those crocus will come back next year!

ge1836

ge1836
Pittsford, NY
(Zone 6a)

November 11, 2009
8:22 PM

Post #7264410

Sometimes they do
pirl
(Arlene) Southold, NY
(Zone 7a)

November 11, 2009
9:52 PM

Post #7264680

According to only my own observations -

Voles eat at the base of the foliage but bunnies eat a crocus leaf from the end of the foliage down to the base. Voles are nasty enough to leave the leaf behind, which makes them that much more despicable!
stormyla
Norristown, PA
(Zone 6b)

November 12, 2009
12:55 AM

Post #7265349

Pirl, I don't remember seeing any crocus foliage on the ground. I was surprised to see some holes in my newly planted crocus border as I planted them in a hugh long trench laid with Permatil. So, I'm hoping that it was just the bunnies eating the foliage. That never occurred to me.

Some years, a groundhog will come by and eat all of my tulips off at the neck and leave lots of very erect topless stems!! I'd much rather he eat the stem too.
pirl
(Arlene) Southold, NY
(Zone 7a)

November 12, 2009
1:13 AM

Post #7265398

I agree. Topless tulips are definitely in bad taste!

The deer always got the tops of my tulips but this year I was strongly determined to win their game and protected them with mesh netting all around them. I won!

For the bunnies you can try cayenne pepper, blood meal (but not if you have digging dogs), chili powder, crushed red peppers, etc. I grow cayenne peppers just to spread for the cute little bunnies (drats!).
stormyla
Norristown, PA
(Zone 6b)

November 12, 2009
1:47 AM

Post #7265481

Pirl, I know you have a large garden. How many canisters of the pepper do you buy? It wouldn't seem like you'd get enough yield from fresh peppers to cover much ground. Doesn't it have to be reapplied after a rain? My first year here, I tried pepper & moth balls to keep the squirrels away. It didn't work at all.

Something that I did last year, really scared the heck out of them. There have hardlly been any here this year at all. I'm not sure if it was the snake-a-way or the vole poison. Two squirrels ate the poison and died. I stopped using the poison, because I was finding dead animals other than voles.
pirl
(Arlene) Southold, NY
(Zone 7a)

November 12, 2009
2:32 AM

Post #7265624

I buy them at a big box store so it's not expensive and I can use the Blood Meal along with the peppers if the hawk doesn't control the bunny population. I grow the cayenne's for my own pleasure and give the bunnies leftovers! If the peppers are not finely ground they are still effective, even after many rains, for any critter that ever puts its paws to its mouth. The bunnies here eat the lily leaves but the deer eat the buds - the dynamic duo for sure!

I also only protect the plants the bunnies eat and not others.

ge1836

ge1836
Pittsford, NY
(Zone 6a)

November 12, 2009
9:00 AM

Post #7266187

I have seen squirrls eat tulip buds
stormyla
Norristown, PA
(Zone 6b)

November 12, 2009
2:02 PM

Post #7266596

Ge, I've seen squirrels dig bulbs up and toss them about the beds. I've never seen them eat them. Another DGer told me that they sprinkle Triple Super Phosphate around freshly planted bulbs to keep the squirrels from digging.

Pirl, I used to mix bloodmeal in my planting dirt, mostly hoping to keep the voles at bay. Then, a neighborhood Rotweiler started jumping his fence and visiting my garden and I was afraid that he would start digging in my beds.

I keep my handtools, fertilizers and soil amendments in one of those big Rubbermaid deck boxes on my bottom patio near my potting bench. One day I came home from work and found the box lid open. There were a bunch of items on the ground. Among the debris were the completely chewed remains of two full bags of bonemeal. He ate every bit of the bonemeal and good portions of the bags!!
pirl
(Arlene) Southold, NY
(Zone 7a)

November 12, 2009
3:36 PM

Post #7266890

Which creature ate the bone meal?
pollyk
Hannibal, NY
(Zone 6a)

November 12, 2009
3:37 PM

Post #7266891

Is he a friendly dog? We used to have a neigboring Doberman that would run up on our deck and try to get in things. She ran so fast it was kind of scary, but she was a good dog. Someone said she once took a steak off their grill.
venu209
Jersey Shore, NJ
(Zone 7a)

November 12, 2009
8:46 PM

Post #7267939

Maybe the Rottie is helping to keep the critters at bay. All Casey (one of my dogs) has to do is poke her head out the door and the squirrels are like lightening getting out of the yard. It's pretty comical to watch, especially when they lose their footing along the fence.
stormyla
Norristown, PA
(Zone 6b)

November 12, 2009
9:43 PM

Post #7268077

I don't know if he's friendly or not. When I'm outside, he sits at the edge of my garden, on the neighbor's property as if he knows where the boundaries are. He won't cross over the beds to my yard if I'm out there. He'll sit there and bark at me. I wouldn't pet him as I often see the owner beating him for jumping the fence and not coming when called. I wouldn't approach or pet any dog that has been beaten, especially a dog as strong as a Rottweiler. It's a shame, the dog needs a new owner.

Then I read that the smell of Milorganite will keep the Critters away. So I starting mixing that in my planting dirt. It does not deter voles, so I'm not sure who it bothers. Maybe it's what chased the squirrels away. Last fall, I sprinkled it all throughout the beds along with some minerals before I dressed them for winter.

motts1
south central, WI
(Zone 5a)

November 13, 2009
2:27 AM

Post #7268913

I am back.
Northern Seasons..sorry I didn't check back re: Jap Beetles. I just picked them off by hand this year. Over the last several seasons I have put out the phernome lure and emptied the traps (4) out 1-2 a day. This is generally not recommended as it brings them in, but I did kill tens of thousands (or several gallons) in a season. This season I didn't due it. Medical stuff prevented me from being able to do the overseeing necessary; plus they didn't become a major problem until late in the season. I think that heavy trapping for several seasons, using the nematode spray one season and the city Finally cut back some of the weeds and wild grape vines that provided such a banquet across the road from my garden.
Currently the major problem is moles. Folks on on one side had folks in to spray poison (maybe for the insects in the ground or ??)..the fellow didn't know what he was spraying but said that he was sure it was safe (we have 3 small dogs)
Anyway..their lawn is flat and ours is laced with tunnels. Usually I try to live trap and put them in the wild, but am not quick enough etc to try it anymore. I would just skip the issue, but that yard is now hazardous; both to my azalea (which cannot be replaced should they continue to burrow under the roots-it has been rescued from wilting a few times already) and to my ankles etc. The tunnels are now about 8" deep and I am concerned about falling. Have called the fellow that relocated some raccoons a few years ago. He will try to help, but said they may be too deep to deal with;. May have to take my chair, shovels, bucket and cane and sit awhile!!
stormyla
Norristown, PA
(Zone 6b)

November 13, 2009
3:25 AM

Post #7269044

Marcia, I don't have moles anymore, but many people who do swear by this trap.

http://www.farmhardware.com/SuperStore/SuperStore-Product.asp?ProductID=5451


When I had them, I used to have to put the dirt back under the Rhodos and Azaleas every day!!
motts1
south central, WI
(Zone 5a)

November 13, 2009
6:27 PM

Post #7270598

Thanks, I will look for it. Major concern was that if I used poison (which I really didn't want to do) that it might end up in possession of a pet.
willowwind
Moundridge, KS
(Zone 6a)

November 16, 2009
3:56 AM

Post #7278199

This has been a very interesting thread to read and has made me very thankful I'm not facing the pests some of you have. My biggest problem wasn't mentioned so I thought I'd see if anyone has good solutions. Grasshoppers! We get them by the bucketfuls...every size, color and description they can come in. By August everything I have looks so ragged, although nothing is totally killed. We live in the country and have brome on two side, so that probably contributes, but I can't get rid of it. We have chickens who really love them, but if the chickens are out they do as much damage to the flowers and veggies as the hoppers. The chicken run does border two sides of my vegetable garden, so that helps the veggies, but there are years that I have no oriental lilies or surprise lilies at all as they're eaten as the blooms emerge. My fall roses bloom on almost leafless branches and every iris leaf looks like it's been cut with pinking shears. I'd love to find a solution for these crazy bugs if anyone else has ever taken them on sucessfully.

Willow
stormyla
Norristown, PA
(Zone 6b)

November 17, 2009
1:33 AM

Post #7280906

willowwind, I had an incredible localized population of grasshoppers in one bed. I also had a really bad ant problem there. I applied Diamotaceous Earth for the ants. The grasshopper population then traveled around to my other beds looking for more ants. The frogs followed the grasshoppers. So I put the DE everywhere. There are a lot less ants & grasshoppers now and the frogs have started to come back.
willowwind
Moundridge, KS
(Zone 6a)

November 17, 2009
7:00 PM

Post #7283144

thank you for the advice stormyla. I hadn't thought of trying DE, but maybe especially when they're still small. That has a bad effect on beneficials as well doesn't it? How about bees? I'm afraid to use too much strong stuff when the damage is mostly surface. The plants survive, they just don't look nice. That's always such a hard decision to make. There is some type of bacterial spore kind of thing that is supposed to work when they're young, but I've never heard from anyone whose used it. Anyone here ever try it?

Willow
stormyla
Norristown, PA
(Zone 6b)

November 17, 2009
7:45 PM

Post #7283274

Willowwind, Are you talking about beneficial nematodes? Or crawling insects?
willowwind
Moundridge, KS
(Zone 6a)

November 18, 2009
5:18 PM

Post #7286550

Crawling, flying etc. Many of the wasps, flies, ladybugs etc. that either eat other bugs or lay eggs on them that will later parasitize the bad bugs. Also, even butterflies and bees. I just hate to use anything, organic or not, that is going to cause indescriminate damage, at least if the pest I'm after isn't totally killing anything...just making things ugly.

Willow
stormyla
Norristown, PA
(Zone 6b)

November 19, 2009
10:28 PM

Post #7290733

Willowwind, I don't know if it makes a difference , but I put the DE down very early in the season, like mid March. My beds are full of Bees, Butterflies and Mantis. One of the reasons that I put it down so early is that I start spraying the Nematodes and releasing the Lacewings and Ladybugs right at the end of April

victorgardener

victorgardener
Lower Hudson Valley, NY
(Zone 6b)

November 19, 2009
10:30 PM

Post #7290736

Same as every year - my mil.
pirl
(Arlene) Southold, NY
(Zone 7a)

November 19, 2009
10:32 PM

Post #7290743

Victor!!!
pollyk
Hannibal, NY
(Zone 6a)

November 19, 2009
10:35 PM

Post #7290752

Victor!

You could try using DE on her, or maybe you could use her for a beneficial against other pests.

victorgardener

victorgardener
Lower Hudson Valley, NY
(Zone 6b)

November 19, 2009
10:43 PM

Post #7290769

Hee hee! Can't imagine her being beneficial to any species.
mekos
Fair Play, SC
(Zone 7b)

November 19, 2009
10:56 PM

Post #7290817

Definately ANTS. I put plants in the greenhouse and went out to check on them and there was Pots of plants some hanging and some sitting on tables and ground with a stream of ants going in and out with mounds of dirt around the edges of the pots. What will get rid of these awful creatures? Some of them are fire ants and some termite ants and just a dukes mixture of somesort. I put down ant killer before putting up the greenhouse and put mulch on the floor to help keep it clean on the ground. The ants are just moving right in and taking over. I'm allergic to ant bites. Now, I'm losing ground. Can anyone help?
stormyla
Norristown, PA
(Zone 6b)

November 19, 2009
11:09 PM

Post #7290863

Mekos, the DE works good on ants, but I don't know if you should use it at table or overheard levels. It can cause respiratory problems. There ya go, Victor!!

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