Insecticide Choices...

BUda, TX(Zone 8b)

I've been looking for an insecticide for our veggie garden, and all the choices have me totally confused.

Inclined to go with Spectracide Triazicide, Malathion, or the Sevin dust or liquid concentrate.. They look to be the most broad-spectrum...

What do you find works good at a decent price.

Richland, WA(Zone 7b)

You REALLY have to be careful in the edible garden-- Instead of trying to wipe out all the living things, try controlling some by hand picking or spraying homemade mixtures like liquid soap & hot sauce in water, etc. IMHO, I would never use Malathion on any food plant. Pyrethrins are fairly safe, but again- read the label.

SE Houston (Hobby), TX(Zone 9a)

And, uncontrolled, "blowing-in-the-wind" SEVIN dust will kill your bees!!!

Sounds like your gonna use a cannon to kill a flea...

Try some of these.
Ortho Garden Disease Control,
Bayer Complete Garden Spray,
Daconil (Bt?),
Garden Dust,

Liberty Hill, TX(Zone 8a)

Any insecticide you use will kill bees organic or not, its still a chemical insecticide. Darconil is for fungus wont help with bugs. Has nothing to do with Bt. The key is to apply when bees are not active and when its not windy. A disease Control Spray isnt an insecticide either. so its useless on bugs. I believe garden dust contains Sevin, not sure. Not sure about Bayer Complete either. Sevin comes in a liqued and I dont believe that blows. Still wondering why people think homemade mixtures are any less lethal to good bugs when they are still insecticides? Many of the things we add to the mixture are neither biodegradable or Organic. Pyrethrins usually do a good job.

My garden is Huge, it is simply not practical to hand pick everything, work full time and raise 2 kids. I wouldnt use anything as strong as Malathion on edibles but if I want to eat 1/2 of what I grow I have to use something that actually works with out having to spray it every few days and still put the good bugs in danger. I prefer to use a man made chemical rather(when necessary) then an organic one because I spray it sooo much less often that I feel I endanger the good bugs less. Last year I used Diazinon 1 time the whole season. It killed the bugs the first go around and never had to put the bees in harms way again.

Just follow the directions on ANYTHINg you choice and you should be fine.

sun city, CA(Zone 9a)

I dont use any pesticides on my garden. too many poisons in the ground already.

Irving, TX(Zone 8a)

I DO NOT use any chemical or pesticides in the garden either.
It took me a few years, but now I have predator bugs to kill the bad bugs ... or i will just find them and squeeze them.

You cannot be an "organic" gardener and still use bad stuff once in a while ... is like : you cannot be "just a little bit pregnant" ...
... this is my humble opinion ...

Liberty Hill, TX(Zone 8a)

Drthor, where did anybody say they were organic? Must have missed that one. I dont consider Murphies Oil Soap Organic but if it works great. Nothing on GG list is Organic or an insecticide.

I try to use nothing man made or Organic because they are both Chemicals. But gardening in TX is a whole different thing then any place else Ive gardened. I know many people on DG that use synthetic Pesticides but we dmail because we are afraid to post. Guess thats still the best way.

I also believe he asked about these products, not our opinion on these products. Still looking for that Organic post drthor, cant seem to find it.

Like I said it also depends on the size of your garden and how much time you have. No matter how you do it IMHO homegrown veggies are always better for you then store bought. If Im going to garden and it comes between me and the bugs Im going to eat it not them.

SE Houston (Hobby), TX(Zone 9a)

Sorry, Kev,
I totally misread that you were looking for an INSECTICIDE. My bad. I'm like drthor, and try to control the beasties with other friendly predators, or handpicking to keep them under control.

Augusta, GA(Zone 8a)

I would advise against a broad spectrum pesticide. The key is to identify your enemy and catch them at their most vulnerable stage. You have to assess the dangers and use an appropriate and least damaging weapon. Carbaryl ( one brand name is Sevin) is very effective against beetles ( flea, Japanese, Mexican bean, Colorado potato, Harlequin). If these are not your problem then you would not use it. Pyrethins , pyrethoids and Rotenone also work fairly well. Remember a bee is an insect so anything that will kill insects kills bees as 1 Lilac stated. Only curcurbits ( melons, cucumbers squash) are insect pollinated so extra care must be taken with these. Biggest threat to Brassicas are the cabbage worm and cabbage looper. Bacillus thuringiensis Berliner is very effective and is a biological which makes some folks feel better about using it. Malathion is widely used for mosquitos, plum curculio, Oriental fruit moth, codling moth etc. Not of much use in a vegetable garden, but benign enough to aerial spray whole communities.

The Bayer complete Garden spray is Cyfluthrin , a pyrethoid . http://pmep.cce.cornell.edu/profiles/extoxnet/carbaryl-dicrotophos/cyfluthrin-ext.html

SE Houston (Hobby), TX(Zone 9a)

Thanks, Farmerdill!

Lewisville, MN(Zone 4a)

Nothing to add other than being in Minnesota makes it a lot easier. Bugs don't do well at -20, so they have to fly in from the south. Only big problem are cabbage worms. We use a regular schedule of spraying with BT. Lots of birds around here, too. They do a good job on bugs. We have erosion control strips that are planted to Alfalfa, wild flowers & flowering shrubs. All draw birds & good bugs.
Thought of this while my pics were loading. Has anyone watched Lightning Bugs eat Aphids ? It is a sight to behold!

This message was edited Apr 13, 2012 4:29 PM

Thumbnail by CountryGardens Thumbnail by CountryGardens Thumbnail by CountryGardens Thumbnail by CountryGardens
Liberty Hill, TX(Zone 8a)

GG-What did you think they were looking for? Just curious?

Thank you so much Farmerdill-Sevin Does work on pillbugs and I only used it one time. Is there anyway FD that you could provide a link or the info so we know which type of product works best for which type of pest. I have to admit if I use anything its usually Neem Oil for Spider Mites. Yes, its Organic. But I try not to use anything unless I see I problem. I will spray for Thrips because they carry the TSWV.

Now Im Lilac, I like that. : )

Augusta, GA(Zone 8a)

There is very little available to home gardeners. In my case thrips are so difficult to control, That I rely on TSWV resistant varieties. There are so few vegetable growers in this area that the really murderous insects like Colorado Potato beetles, Japanese beetles, even flea beetles are relatively rare so I rarely have to use insecticides other than Bt. on Brassicas. I do keep Carbaryl for infestations of Harlequins on the brassicas and cucumber beetles. Major pests like the pickle worm, I have learned to work around as they are migratory. Very early and very late cucurbits escape their devastation. Squash bugs just laugh off most common insecticides. Santitation ( burying all garden debris) usually keeps them in check as they overwinter in the soil and they love cover.

http://www.growingproduce.com/video/c:149/ipm/970/?utm_source=SilverpopMailing&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=AVG%20eNews%20April%2012%202012%20(1)&utm_content= http://www.growingproduce.com/crop-protection/insect-control
My copy of the Crop Protection Handbook is a few years old, Expensive but a great reference. http://www.meistermedia.com/handbook/

Hutto, TX(Zone 8b)

Kevin,

Beetles are my primary pest. I control them with Sevin dust and and applicator called the Dustin Mizer. I apply at dawn, before the bees are active and when the dew will cause the dust to adhere to the plants. That alllows me to effectively treat without leaving everything drowned in powder. Sevin spray, applied when bees are away also works well.

Warrenton, VA

I just tried to buy the old tried & true Sevin dust at a local old-timer's nursery, and was told that they do not carry it anymore. Reason? "It isn't something that you should get into your lungs." Has anyone else heard this?

Augusta, GA(Zone 8a)

People have misused dusts. No dust is good for your lungs, but properly applied they are safe enough.You should wear a dust mask with any dust application. Government is trying hard to protect us from our own stupidity. Most places use to carry Hudson dust applicators but I have not seen one in years. Still available on the internet tho. Spreading wood ashes or ground limestone puts a lot of particles in the air.

BUda, TX(Zone 8b)

Thank you all for your insight and comments. Last year the wife was pretty adamant about using organics in the garden, so I have pretty much gone along but, to me, it seemed the organics just didn't work all that effectively. We went and bought a 1000 ladybugs from Natural Gardener in Austin. I'm thinking there may also have been a factor with the weather and drought we dealt with last year.

IMHO, it also seems that each organic is very specific for a certain insect, or in the case of fungicides, a certain disease. That's what I'm talking about with the term "broad-spectrum". Yes, the Triazicide and the Sevin kill a lot of things, but like some have said, you're not going to spray them every week or two, and yes, you can spot treat.

FD>> When I was researching at Lowe's, I was looking at the Bayer products, and I'm SURE they specified not for use in a vegetable garden. I think it was just Bayer Complete Insecticide, not Garden Insecticide, and I guess there is a big difference. That was the reason that Bayer products weren't mentioned in my original post, since I'm looking for garden pest control products. I have heard good things about Bayer products, but of course, everyone has an opinion and likes and dislikes about each product.

GG>>No problem... I've heard about the Daconil and was going to ask about it in a fungicide post. And what is Garden Dust?? Did a little search on here and have read some of the info, but will do it again, and get a better grasp of what's out here. BTW, what is (Bt?)??? A lot of people throw out initials and I've got no clue as to what they are... TSWV, for example... Probably have heard it talked about here, just not making the connection.

Phoenix, AZ(Zone 9b)

Bt is Bacillus thuringiensis. I don't know what TSWV is either. and somewhere I just read IINM....no idea. Finally figured Lisa's ATM is at the moment, not something to do with a debit card. ;-)

Augusta, GA(Zone 8a)

Tomato Spotted Wilt Virus (TSWV), is insect vectored ( thrips) and a major problem in this area. Daconil is one brand name for Chlorothalonil. also available as Ortho Max Garden Disease Control and others. http://extoxnet.orst.edu/pips/chloroth.htm Bayer Max Complete Insect dust is Permethrin , a pyrethoid http://extoxnet.orst.edu/pips/permethr.htm

Deep East Texas, TX(Zone 8a)

One has to live with it (TSWV) to know what it is but I had to chuckle at the ATM remark MaryMcP. That same thought crossed my peabrain.

Liberty Hill, TX(Zone 8a)

To make it worse I cant find where I put ATM.,, Sh** Also, Im Liliac now,LOL

BUda, TX(Zone 8b)

OK..IINM>>> If I'm Not Mistaken...

GG>> Had the list of items I was curious from Lowe's. We were at HD today and found the Bayer Complete Garden Insecticide & the Garden Dust. And of course, I couldn't find the stuff I found at Lowe's on Friday...


Liberty Hill, TX(Zone 8a)

I know Bayer has a lot of products and many of them are systemic and not recommended for use on edibles, but evidently Kev. You found one? What is in Garden Dust?

My small garden is 1000 sq feet and the larger one is twice that big. I decided one yr. to let the cucumber beetles live their life only to find out part of their life cycle was eating the roots off my spinach and a few other plants. Argh..

I, like you Kev, have tried to go Organic, (prefer to use nothing) but I find it was like spitting into the wind. I know they are all chemicals. I find that if I can use a couple of products that I only have to apply 2-3 x a season that Im putting the good bugs in a lot less danger. Many of these insects carry diseases hate to loose plants when I could have killed the bug to begin with.

New Orleans, LA(Zone 9a)

Quote from 1lisac :
Drthor, where did anybody say they were organic? Must have missed that one. I dont consider Murphies Oil Soap Organic but if it works great. Nothing on GG list is Organic or an insecticide.

I try to use nothing man made or Organic because they are both Chemicals. But gardening in TX is a whole different thing then any place else Ive gardened. I know many people on DG that use synthetic Pesticides but we dmail because we are afraid to post. Guess thats still the best way.

I also believe he asked about these products, not our opinion on these products. Still looking for that Organic post drthor, cant seem to find it.

Like I said it also depends on the size of your garden and how much time you have. No matter how you do it IMHO homegrown veggies are always better for you then store bought. If Im going to garden and it comes between me and the bugs Im going to eat it not them.



I live in Louisiana, and like Texas, the various bugs think this place is heaven. For example, the fuzzy black caterpillars have been rampant this spring. I mean eating everything! If I sit in the garden for 1/2 hour, or even on my front porch, I can see them scurrying from one green plant to another. My first attack was with BT, did absolutely no good. Second attempt, was Safer Soap - no good. Finally, sevin dust that knocked them out. And you can't hand pick these things, cause they sting like fire and you have blisters for over a week, that are prone to infection. My DH has a sting on his leg right now that's showing signs of infection that he may have to go to the doctor for.

BUda, TX(Zone 8b)

Lisa>> Kyle/Buda's become a real hot-spot now that we have a Lowe's, Home Depot, Wal-Mart Supercenter, and a HEB Plus. When I went to Home Depot found the Bayer Complete Garden items, Lowe's didn't have them, and HD also had the systemic items that you talked about. Lowe's didn't have the selection of Bayer products that HD did.

I think I'm gonna go with the Bayer Complete GARDEN Insecticide along with the Daconil as my fungicide. The GARDEN DUST that GymGirl was talking about is made by Bonide, I think, but I know for sure it's not a Bayer product. Just looked at it quickly so can't really say if it's a viable product.

I plan on getting the concentrates of the products so I can adjust the strength and amount as needed, using the gallon tank sprayer I've got. If I need a large quantity I also have a 3-gallon tank sprayer. I may pick up some Sevin as a back-up, just so they don't get used to the Bayer stuff... What do you specifically use??

Hutto, TX(Zone 8b)

I use the Sevin 5% powder, but there is also a liquid concentrate

Liberty Hill, TX(Zone 8a)

To be honest I dont use much anymore bc I hit them hard when they first show and dont have to deal with their different life cycles thus different products. Like the time I let the cucumber beetles go not realizing at some point, in their life cycle, they eat the roots off other plants.The last thing I used was neem oil because Spider Mites are my biggest issue when its hot and dry.

I have a print out somewhere from the Williamson County Ag Agency that goes into alot of detail but I cant find it ATM. The only other bug I have had a real problem with are Pill Bugs eating my seedlings. I put Sevin Dust around each seedling one time, about 4 yrs ago and havent had to do it again. I have just found that if I let the bugs go and dont really take care of the issue eventually it gets to be completely out of control. I do have an all purpose garden spray that I ve used but I cant remember the name of the active ingredient. I do spray once or twice a season for thrips because they carry TSWV.

You kind of need to remember that when you plant a garden you are creating a "false niche" Another words those plants wouldnt be there if you didnt plant them and many of the pests wouldnt be there either, so some dont have any natural enemies.

Ill have to look up Garden Dust, it just doesnt sound like a Market name but a discription LOL

jomon-I think the worms you are talking about are Army Worms. They seem to be a real problem here too from what Ive heard. I havent seen them yet this year, if you go to to the Texas Forum you will see a thread about Cutworms but they turned out to be army worms. Which are larva for beetles, I think.

Deep East Texas, TX(Zone 8a)

Lisa ~ armyworms don't sting/bite do they? We have a similar critter here that some call a stinging asp. It will feel like you are on fire where it brushed against you.

Liberty Hill, TX(Zone 8a)

I dont know if they sting/bit or not. I didnt think so but I also thought the asp thing was white and I didnt know they came in droves. On that Tx Thread they are talking about army worms hanging on the outside of the house and in the house. The above post made me think of that and while asp came to mind Ive never heard of them being described like that.

Are there other Caterpillars that sting or bit? It sounds like a plague

Deep East Texas, TX(Zone 8a)

From Jomoncons' description, "... you can't hand pick these things, cause they sting like fire and you have blisters for over a week, that are prone to infection. " makes me wonder what the heck they are. I don't think those ones are the army worms.

Plagues are probably pretty descriptive from the sounds of this growing season... on the look out for tomato hornworms. Glad those buddies don't sting!








New Orleans, LA(Zone 9a)

The caterpillars that I was talking about are the buck moth caterpillars. Here's an article about them. The article says they're purple, but they look black to me - although I don't get too close to them. And they eat all sorts of things, not just oak trees. However, folks here have learned not to walk under oak trees in the springtime. And that can be hard since we have lots & lots of oak trees!

http://www.nola.com/homegarden/index.ssf/2010/04/buck_moth_caterpillar_assault.html

And I know we also have a sort of spiny, green caterpillar that also stings like heck. That one's usually around in the late fall.

This message was edited Apr 15, 2012 8:24 PM

BUda, TX(Zone 8b)

I've used the hose-end sprayers before and just don't like the spray they put out, that's the main reason why I use the concentrate & a tank sprayer. Plus the fact that if I need just a plant or 2 to apply product, I can use a quart spray bottle, and not waste a lot by it dripping all over the ground.

Deep East Texas, TX(Zone 8a)

Interesting article on the black caterpillar Jomoncon. It even looks wicked. The article suggested the same treatment that works for our stinging cats. An ice pack applied immediately is the best solution here. Good luck... it appears to be formidable.

Deep South Coastal, TX(Zone 10a)

Bt kills caterpillars, but they have to eat it and it degrades quickly so may take more than one application. Spinosad works on thrips, is OMRI approved but is harmful to bees so spray late in the evening when bees are not active. I, like Farmerdill, have gone to more resistant varieties so spraying is not needed as much. I had a huge infestation of aphids on kale, potatoes and arugula. The ladybugs took a couple of weeks but completely killed all aphids with no spraying.

The Bonide dust can be used as a spray also, contains pyrethrin, copper and sulphur. It is broad spectrum and will kill good bugs as well as bad. It CANNOT be used on curcurbits, they do not like copper/sulphur on their leaves and will be killed or stunted permanently.

We fight SVBs, pickle worms, cabbage moths, southern white butterfly caterpillars (striped cats that eat brassicas, lettuce, greens, nasturtiums, etc), leaf footed bugs (soldier beetles are a good predator) which can only be killed in first or second instar, stink bugs, harlequin bugs, aphids of all kinds, mites, scale, you get the picture! We are in a high agriculture area so lots of bugs. Thankfully we do not have japanese beetles or potato beetles.

Snails and pillbugs are the bane of my garden. I cannot seem to get rid of them at all. My garden is clean, no debris and we are in a dry area, but they are everywhere. I can't use spinosad granules because they also kill bugs I want to keep.

Bayer has a spray/drench that is imidicloprid. It is systemic, can only be used one time per crop and lasts about 6-12 weeks. There is a 3 week wait to harvest. I don't use it, but other farmers in the area do. Some of the Bayer products also contain flouramite (spelling), a fungicide that is NOT approved for garden use, along with the imidicloprid.
If you use any kind of soap or oil spray, don't use it in the heat of the day. It can burn your plants.

Neem is pretty good for some insects, is an oil and toxic to bees and other beneficials so use it carefully. I have been adding neemcake (ground up seed hulls left after pressing the oil) and seem to be getting some insect control. I'm hoping it will lessen the snail and pillbug population but it hasn't so far.

If you have fireants, there is a new product on the market called Antidote which is beneficial nematodes and works well if used properly. Spinosad also kills fireants when used as a drench but it will also kill beneficial ants (yes, ants are necessary part of nature).

SE Houston (Hobby), TX(Zone 9a)

This is a GREAT thread!

Warrenton, VA

Hey Calalily! Iffin' you feel the need to learn about doggone Japanese Beetles, come on up here to Virginee! And, by the way, your post was excellent - so very helpful to all!

Deep South Coastal, TX(Zone 10a)

No thank you to the Japanese Beetle introduction, I remember those from Tennessee! I used to go around with a pail of soapy water and knock them into it to drown, didn't even make a dent in the population.

BUda, TX(Zone 8b)

The wife & I were working in the front little flower bed last night and she a big asp, about 2" long. Good thing I get the insecticide tomorrow. Gonna go with the Bayer Complete, and a little Sevin dust as a back-up. Also found about 4 white grubs, good thing we just started working this little section, get'um before we get everything in there for them to munch on....

Deep South Coastal, TX(Zone 10a)

Not all Texas grubs are bad, the grub from the rhinocerous beetle is only harmful to young palm trees (favorite food). Its droppings are as good as earthworm castings and it really loosens the soil. These are easy to identify, they are HUGE and can work a compost pile in short order.
If you get stung by as asp, ice is about the only thing other than morphine that will ease the pain (been there, done that and got a t-shirt!)

forgot to add: for any stinging caterpillar, first and most important thing is to remove the spines that may be in your skin using tape. Place the tape over the sting using gentle pressure then pull off. It may take some hair with it, but will remove the spines.

This message was edited Apr 17, 2012 8:46 AM

SE Houston (Hobby), TX(Zone 9a)

I remember sitting on the porch "playing jacks" with a wide skirt on. One 'a those fuzzy cats crawled under my skirt and bit me on the thigh.

Needless to say, I have a very healthy respect for fuzzy cats....

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