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Coleus: Holes. Whats eating my cuttings?

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ge1836

ge1836
Pittsford, NY
(Zone 6a)

October 10, 2010
3:40 AM

Post #8147901

I am in shock. I have sprayed with Bayer Rose and Flower insect spray but the holes continue to show up. There is no insect visible .
This is the 3rd year for cuttings for me and I have never seen any damage like this.

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HoosierGreen
Danville, IN

October 10, 2010
6:12 PM

Post #8149211

Check your cuttings after dark to see what comes out at night to eat the leaves. Could be earwigs. Check with a flashlight to sneak up on the varmits!

ge1836

ge1836
Pittsford, NY
(Zone 6a)

October 11, 2010
1:23 AM

Post #8149735

Thanks I will. They are making lace out of 3 of my cuttings.Will the whole collection be damages?
I have tossed the plants that are infected and sprayed the rest with Bayer Rose and Flower insect spray,

ge1836

ge1836
Pittsford, NY
(Zone 6a)

October 11, 2010
2:46 AM

Post #8149749

I just scanned around and saw where Sluggo controles earwigs.
The article also said to leave layered wet newspaper around and the earwigs go into the paper when they are done feeding at night.Just toss the wet papers.
I have tossed 2 plants.Guess I wont count me coleus for planters until January to see what survived.
pirl
(Arlene) Southold, NY
(Zone 7a)

October 11, 2010
5:53 AM

Post #8149889

You have taken cuttings I hope!

Remove affected leaves and wash the plants with insecticidal soap (wear gloves) before you bring them inside.

You can use a hollowed out orange, grapefruit, lemon, etc. at the foot of the plant (instead of newspapers) and the earwigs will flock to it at night. The problem comes in when you remove the shell of the fruit, or the newspaper, in the morning. The earwigs will scurry away (in all directions at the same time) and, unless there's just one, you won't be able to catch them as they drop from the lure.

Ortho's Bug Geta Plus is excellent at controlling earwigs but has to be used regularly.

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ge1836

ge1836
Pittsford, NY
(Zone 6a)

October 11, 2010
6:35 AM

Post #8149958

These are my cuttings. I have tossed the ones that were the worse off.
We have had 2 nights of frost so there isnt a chance for new cuttings.
Its the first disaster I have had so I am lucky in certain context.
I suppose the earwigs came in with the potted cuttings.

This message was edited Oct 11, 2010 8:36 AM
pirl
(Arlene) Southold, NY
(Zone 7a)

October 11, 2010
6:43 AM

Post #8149972

Oh no!

If they are inside, take them outside when it warms up later today and drench the soil with insecticidal soap and leave it outside to drain well before bringing it back inside.

Drench each and every pot to ease your mind.

ge1836

ge1836
Pittsford, NY
(Zone 6a)

October 11, 2010
6:56 AM

Post #8150008

what is insecticidal soap?
pirl
(Arlene) Southold, NY
(Zone 7a)

October 11, 2010
7:01 AM

Post #8150021

It's available at most nurseries but call first, to be sure, before you waste the time and gas. Just mix it as per the directions on the container and use it to kill any insects.

http://gardening.wsu.edu/library/lpro002/lpro002.htm

I have never used Neem Oil but if you have just read the label and see if it will do the job.

ge1836

ge1836
Pittsford, NY
(Zone 6a)

October 11, 2010
7:05 AM

Post #8150036

I just read an article on killing soft shelled insects. The vedg.based insectecides such as Neem are useless ,so the srticle said.
I just came back from the nursery and dont want to go again for awhile. I have found new cuttings for 1 of the tossed plants. If the problem continues aftre the soap method I used I will just go back to the nursery in a couple of days.
All thye footwork necessary for this problem is really draining.If it becomes necessary I will toss all the plants and just go heavy on RD next year.
pirl
(Arlene) Southold, NY
(Zone 7a)

October 11, 2010
7:12 AM

Post #8150052

Rosy Dawn will love your business!

ge1836

ge1836
Pittsford, NY
(Zone 6a)

October 11, 2010
7:25 AM

Post #8150088

A word for the aging gardeners. These situations that crop up from time to time are part of getting older. Its sometimes easier and less risky to pay the bucks ,rather than exhaust ones self trying to maintain what was.
Re evaluating from time to time is helpfull.
I cant push the river.

ge1836

ge1836
Pittsford, NY
(Zone 6a)

October 11, 2010
9:04 AM

Post #8150275

Hours later.
I tossed them and took new cuttings from what coleus are left in the garden.
It was brutal to toss those big potsof fully rooted cuttings.
I will console myself with a BBC Mystery.
coleup
annapolis, MD
(Zone 7b)

October 11, 2010
7:02 PM

Post #8151279

[quote="ge1836"]A word for the aging gardeners. These situations that crop up from time to time are part of getting older. Its sometimes easier and less risky to pay the bucks ,rather than exhaust ones self trying to maintain what was.
Re evaluating from time to time is helpfull.
I cant push the river.[/quote]

GE, Thank you for your words of wisdom!!!! I'm preparing nine boxes of coleus cuttings to share(see my thread in this forum) and would love to do a tenth box for you with some of my well-rooted cuttings if you'd like. Send me a Dmail with your address and your color or leaf, type preferences. I can't push the river and overwinter all the coleus I had planned to...so... how about it?

ge1836

ge1836
Pittsford, NY
(Zone 6a)

October 12, 2010
2:44 AM

Post #8151653

WOW I just love DG'ers. A few of you have stepped up with great advise and cuttings of your own to share.
I appreciate the gestures more than I can say.
I cut 8 from coleus in the garden that still hadnt been frosted. I really dont have the room this year since I removed the bathtub and made a shower out of the space.
Its funny how 2 months time in the house, and a bug disaster will shift my favorits and I let 2 plants go to plant heaven from the 10 I had grown from late Aug.
Thanks coleup but I will take a pass.

coleuslover123

coleuslover123
Mount Laurel, NJ

October 20, 2010
7:05 PM

Post #8166986

I'm having such a problem this year with some kind of inch worms. I've never had these on my coleus before! I've sprayed with insecticidial soap but it doesn't seem to be phasing them. I'm hesitant to spray with anything stronger. Any ideas on what sprays will kill the catepillars but not hurt the coleus?
dragonmanlv
Springdale, UT

October 20, 2010
8:29 PM

Post #8167100

The exact thing is happening to all of my cuttings. Every day I notice more and more of the plant missing. I am rooting in water, not soil so I am sure it is not coming from the soil. I have been through the sneaky inch worms and it's not that.I have done the insecticidal soap and soaked them for an hour only to find more of the cuttings eaten the next day.Now under strong light , I see little flies the size of gnats only lighter in color I think it's whiteflies but there are only a few of these bugs , maybe 5 ? I thought white flies infested plants .
eskinola
Glen Riddle Lima, PA

October 21, 2010
5:25 AM

Post #8167510

could it be stink bugs? They do that to my coleus in the kitchen garden window. Of course, it can be tough to catch them... they fly around and hide.

Also, I've caught some little green inchworm thingies before on my coleus. They've chomped alot before.

Good luck finding the offending critters!

Joy

coleuslover123

coleuslover123
Mount Laurel, NJ

October 21, 2010
8:29 AM

Post #8167799

So what sprays has anyone used successfully on coleus, that doesn't kill them and doesn't leave spots? (Other than insecticidial soap.) I think I need something stronger but I don't know which ones are safe.
pirl
(Arlene) Southold, NY
(Zone 7a)

October 21, 2010
10:45 AM

Post #8167964

I don't use sprays because I don't have the serious eating pests that others on this thread have had. I do wash cuttings by submerging them in warm, sudsy water for an hour in the high hopes that if any critters are there they don't know how to do the backstroke.

You might want to write to Rosy Dawn and ask their advice.
sugarweed
Jacksonville & Okeec, FL
(Zone 9a)

October 21, 2010
12:07 PM

Post #8168064

You might also ask Goodoldbake.
Happy has also said something about hairspray, and had invested in a gallon from Sally's.
We need to see what that's about.
I'll d-mail her
Sidney
daisy_lee
New Hyde Park, NY

October 22, 2010
8:28 PM

Post #8170483

I use Schultz Garden Safe Insecticidal Soap and really like it. It kills insects on contact and doesn't have any odor. I brought in my Coleus from outside and drenched the foliage with it and there is absolutely no damage to the leaves at all.

http://homeharvest.com/insectspraysinsecticidalsoaps.htm

It is sold at Home Depot and nurseries.

Carol
daisy_lee
New Hyde Park, NY

October 22, 2010
8:38 PM

Post #8170499

Check out this "Earwig Trap" and it sounds like it works too!

http://forums2.gardenweb.com/forums/load/seed/msg0600232529044.html?7

Carol
eskinola
Glen Riddle Lima, PA

November 4, 2010
11:44 AM

Post #8194372

did you ever find out what bug it was? i was inspecting my coleus under lights last night and found chewed leaves. and then I found a cabbage moth caterpillar hiding... i woudn't have found him if i hadn't inspected very carefully. i was looking for some kind of bug!

:)
JOY
slsharris
Norristown, PA

June 12, 2011
11:01 AM

Post #8625705

Stinkbugs don't chew, so they can't be leaving holes. If you got close enough to look, you'd see that they come complete with a "straw" that is used to pierce the plant (usually stems) to play vampire on your plant. Earwigs are a good suspect -- and hey -- what about slugs? They are nocturnal and will go down under debris. under the pot, and alongside the dry soil gap between pot and soil to hide.

S.

ge1836

ge1836
Pittsford, NY
(Zone 6a)

June 13, 2011
2:24 AM

Post #8626920

Earwigs. I put the pot and all outside for the winter.The problem stopped.
I am also done with bringing cuttings inside.
Too much to manage for me these days.I will ramp up my coleus budget and buy what I need.
pirl
(Arlene) Southold, NY
(Zone 7a)

June 13, 2011
6:51 AM

Post #8627219

I'm going to try and follow your lead, ge. I have seven in pots that can stay but will seriously avoid more cuttings.

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ge1836

ge1836
Pittsford, NY
(Zone 6a)

June 13, 2011
7:55 AM

Post #8627409

The watering is exhausting when there are so many. I went from 200 in my livingroom window (who knew 30 cuttings) in 2009-10. This year I took 5 cuttings and still ended up with 30 plants.Too much.
sugarweed
Jacksonville & Okeec, FL
(Zone 9a)

June 13, 2011
10:22 AM

Post #8627750

I am in that heavenly Zone 10 now and will overwinter enough to send cuttings in the early spring.
Today I'm transplanting heirloom tomato plants I grew from a basket of mixed tiny tomatoes I got at Fairchild gardens plant and food sale.
Sidney
cathy166
Stamford, CT
(Zone 6b)

August 7, 2011
8:02 AM

Post #8741698

I am convinced that the damage to the coleus and sweet potato vines were the result of sap from the overhead oak tree. The inground plants that are there are mostly strap leaves (irises, day lilies) or early bloomers like peonies and clematis that are not noticeably affected. The caladiums don't seem to be affected and the begonias have such big leaves that it is not obvious.

Hint: if you're going to move containers, water them AFTER you move them.
ZZsBabiez
Lodi, CA
(Zone 9b)

September 17, 2011
6:16 PM

Post #8812716

If you are getting those little green caterpillars, use BT. (Bacillus thuringiensis) I have had problems with them in the past. They are hard to find to!

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