aphids galore, first sighting of ladybugs and oil-soap spray?

ameera(z11 Dubai)February 1, 2013

Hi, I have gotten aphids galore (along with the ants that love them) on my cucumber and spaghetti squash plants, more on the cucumber ones.

Today I noticed two ladybugs and possibly a young ladybug.

Because they were so outnumbered I sprayed most of the aphids with an oil murphy soap dilution... but I wonder if that was the wrong thing to do? I am going to go rinse the leaves of it now.

Will the oil soap harm the ladybugs? Should I hold off spraying a few days and hope more ladybugs come? I also just looked up ladybug egg images and don't think there were any...

I will post pictures now:

Ladybug 1

Ladybug 2

Is this a baby ladybug?

I think this is a baby dragonfly? It wouldn't leave the cucumber plant. :). I hope it is a good insect for plants though... Will Google it

This post was edited by ameera on Fri, Feb 1, 13 at 9:31

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ameera(z11 Dubai)

oops sorry I just noticed the new edit post feature! I fixed the photo links in my original post... but here is a lil' special one :P I went back up to spray the leaves with water and came upon this lil' scene... the two adult ladybugs found each other!

I hope she lays eggs on my plants!

This post was edited by ameera on Fri, Feb 1, 13 at 9:36

    Bookmark   February 1, 2013 at 9:21AM
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jrslick (North Central Kansas, Zone 5B)

If you have ants too, they are "Farming" the aphids. The ants protect the aphids and put them where they will produce food for the ants. Get rid of the ants and then take care of the aphids.

Jay

    Bookmark   February 1, 2013 at 9:28AM
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glib(5.5)

In my case, usually the ladybugs completely exterminate the aphids. No action needed from me. Aphids can make it here only after October 31, after the ladybugs have started hibernation.

    Bookmark   February 1, 2013 at 11:10AM
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jean001a(Portland OR 7b)

In your first post, the first two images show lady beetles.
The 3rd image shows a beneficial fly -- called a flower fly, or syrphid fly, its youngsters destroy aphids.

Looks like your garden is thriving.

    Bookmark   February 1, 2013 at 1:57PM
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ameera(z11 Dubai)

jrslick, I would feel guilty killing the ants... will if I have to but I will wait it out and see if I can find another way... I am Muslim and we aren't supposed to kill ants. We can if they become a nuisance though... I will try to spend time watching the ladybugs and see if the ants are attacking them.....

glib, I hope that female ladybug lays her eggs on my plants! I juts looked up the lifecycle of ladybugs and I had no idea they have a larvae, then pupa stage before emerging as adult ladybugs... I wonder what that bug is in my third photo...

I wonder if they hibernate here? Maybe during the worst of the summer temperatures?

jean001a, thank you, though for a "garden" it really is just veggie plants in containers up on our concrete roof. I never knew about the syrphid/flower fly before! It makes me excited to know I at least have some beneficial bugs starting to visit up on my roof garden :)

I am going to leave my plants alone for a few days and hope more beneficial bugs come and can eat up the aphids.

    Bookmark   February 1, 2013 at 5:43PM
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little_minnie(zone 4a)

I release lady bugs every year so I have them when I need them. So I have found it best to spray a hard spray of water on the aphids when you find a bunch and then wait and let the lady bugs come. It seems like they only reproduce when aphids are around. In 3 days I have seen lady bug larva everywhere!

    Bookmark   February 1, 2013 at 9:11PM
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