Garlic and Scale

asleep_in_the_gardenApril 7, 2013

From what I've been reading garlic will kill scale insect and lets face it,..I shoulda been fighting those little monsters a million years ago when I first realized my staghorn was infested. Naturally the scheffs are honey-dewed and so is my ficus benjamina. Who knows what else has got it,right?

So my thinking is that I'll boil some garlic in water,let it cool,then spray the heck outta everything,concentrating on the areas I know are worst.

Would love advice right about now because when it comes to pests I'm usually pretty lucky but things change.

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flora_uk(SW UK 8/9)

I have never tried this but I am very sceptical. Scale is called scale because of the hard domed shell which nothing much can get through, even quite strong chemical insecticides. I just wipe over all stems and leaves with a babywipe if I spot any scale. It works and was recommended to me by a citrus grower. Putting your plants outdoors as soon as the weather permits will also help as will vigilance. Try to spot it before it becomes an infestation.

    Bookmark   April 8, 2013 at 4:11AM
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emerald1951

Hi....I have been using...Bayer Advance...its a plant spike looks like a big pill...you push it down in tha soil and the plant takes it in and that kills ANY bug that eats, or sucks on your plant...
my hoya rope plant had mealys really bad and now its healthy and growing like crazy...No mealys....heres a picture...I plan on repotting soon.....linda

    Bookmark   April 8, 2013 at 9:31AM
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Tiffany, purpleinopp GardenWeb, Z8b Opp, AL

Please let us know the results of your experiment. I try not to use any chems, but scale is extremely hard to fight manually. Some plants (like that rope hoya pictured) just have too many cracks/crevices. This is a confusing pest to me, with the various stages of maturity and apparently there are over 1000 kinds. I would think you'd need to do it often enough to make sure you're zapping them in the vulnerable state before they develop the outer coating.

Every time I've ever tried to make some kind of natural spray, it clogs up the spray bottle. So I guess I'd recommend running it through a coffee filter, like "they" say but the lazy like me ignore, then complain about it.

    Bookmark   April 8, 2013 at 10:10AM
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asleep_in_the_garden

Ok so far I haven't gotten around to making my spray because it would seem there was no frikkin garlic in the cupboard. Think garlic salt would work? JUST kidding JUST kidding! So when I DO get around to getting more fresh garlic(like putting it off will help any more than it has already),I'm wondering if I should try watering with it instead. I figure if the tissues of my plants are chock full of it(in that systemic kinda way)the bugs will die. Also further reading led me to a post where some guy was putting actual cloves of garlic in the soil surface after cutting off the root crown to slowly release it into the soil and he said it worked.

Another way I found that had nothing to do with garlic was bagging the plant up with mothballs and leaving the setup like that for 24 hrs like a mini bug-bomb. Not too sure about that approach.

    Bookmark   April 8, 2013 at 11:53AM
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asleep_in_the_garden

OH and thanks for the coffee filter idea Purp,knowing me I'da had chunks of it in my sprayer! LOL

    Bookmark   April 8, 2013 at 11:55AM
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Tiffany, purpleinopp GardenWeb, Z8b Opp, AL

YW! I think I'd try the garlic first. Moth balls could be more toxic than the little soil pill Emerald mentioned, which I'd probably also try first but would investigate more first, regarding what I do with "used potting soil" and how long this stuff hangs around.

There's a lot out there to read about moth balls, which was all scary, from what I've read over the years. The garlic at least sounds more targeted than the pill, being less likely to blanket-kill organic microbial activity in a pot, if such is a concern or even a valid issue, whereas a little slowly decomposing garlic, or sprayed garlic tea is something benign that everyone likes. ;)

This reminds me of a discussion, early last spring I think, would growing garlic or chives or some member of the Allium genus deter pests in pots? One could trim it like a chia pet/grass... I never did anything on that, did anyone?

    Bookmark   April 8, 2013 at 12:53PM
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asleep_in_the_garden

The guy who was putting whole cloves in actually sprouted one on accident(didn't quite get all the root crown on it I guess). Went on to say that surely it wouldn't hurt anything to leave it there.

Anyhoo...
I've got my garlic now.
I'll let you guys know how it goes.

    Bookmark   April 8, 2013 at 1:40PM
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birdsnblooms

Linda, your Hoya is amazing. I've never, ever seen a prettier specimen.
Do you know its age? It has to be up there. :)

Asleep. I don't use chemicals, either, and I agree w/Purple..Mothballs are harmful.
Plus, they STINK..lol.

I mix water, Fish Emulsion, garlic, hot pepper, citrus, 'rind or juice,' and 2 drops of dish soap in a mister. All but FE sits overnight.

This mix kills scale ASAP, without the use of chemicals.
A citrus seller in Fl, gave me the recipe back in 1999 when an Olive Tree ordered from another nursery arrived, loaded w/scale.
The first application killed every last scale, but I applied a second application to be certain.
My plants have been scale-free since.

Good luck with the garlic. Toni

    Bookmark   April 8, 2013 at 2:45PM
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asleep_in_the_garden

Hope this works!

Oh man...this isn't the right thread...oops!

Oh well the pic didn't seem to work anyway. lol

This post was edited by asleep_in_the_garden on Sun, Apr 14, 13 at 15:14

    Bookmark   April 14, 2013 at 3:11PM
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asleep_in_the_garden

So I've been spraying down the staghorn with my garlic tea and I kinda figured that such "foliar waterings" would allow the garlic to get down in the tissue and at least for now the spread doesn't seem to be getting any worse. The existing population might be dead,but with scale just sitting there like they do,who would know,right?

Think I'll take it down,clean it up a bit,and ten spray some more ....just in case. :)

    Bookmark   April 14, 2013 at 4:32PM
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asleep_in_the_garden

The tea doesn't appear to be doing anything.

Remember upthread where I spoke of a guy putting cloves in the soil? Well I decided to jam a clove into the stag from the top. If it roots,it roots and if this makes a difference I will be happy to display my fern with garlic greens growing out of the top.

Not holding my breath here but I guess the experiment continues.

    Bookmark   April 18, 2013 at 1:11AM
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Tiffany, purpleinopp GardenWeb, Z8b Opp, AL

Sending good vibes!!

    Bookmark   April 18, 2013 at 9:18AM
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