Monday, July 16, 2012

Natural aphid killers

We had a ton of aphids early in the season, on everything from the rose bushes to the eggplants. I sprayed them with soapy water, which really helps to reduce the infestation. But that wasn't enough to entirely eradicate the squishy green bugs. So, we added Safer 3 in 1 bug spray to the treatment. The insecticide  is pretty effective. but had a somewhat negative impact on the plants, which were early in their growth stage. I noticed shriveled and misshapen leaves, though the damage was not lasting. To my surprise, ladybugs dealt the final blow to the aphids. Turns out the black-spotted red beetles love to eat aphids. During the worst of the infestation on the eggplants, I saw several ladybugs hanging out on the broad leaves, and I haven't seen any aphids on them since! It is so nice to know that insects as charming and iconic as ladybugs are a gardener's friend. And of course, it's wonderful to see nature working it's own magic to get rid of annoying pests! If they're not hanging out in your garden, you can buy them online at  
Safer bug spray caused the eggplant leaves to shrivel