Return to the Organic Gardening Forum | Post a Follow-Up

 o
Squash bugs

Posted by mogardening 5b (My Page) on
Wed, Jul 6, 05 at 22:51

Looking for some more info on squash bugs. I've been watering the zucchini and pumpkins to bring the squash bugs out into the open and grabbing them! And removing any eggs I find. How long will this go on?????...I've been doing this, every couple of days, each time capturing about 20 adults and plenty of eggs, although the eggs have been less the last couple of times.Has anyone tired Diamotaceous Earth or flour on squash bugs? I've read they are very hard to control organically.I've never had them this bad before.


Follow-Up Postings:

 o
RE: Squash bugs

mogardening: I don't know how large your planting is, but you're certainly to be commended for doing what you've done to quell the onslaught. Squash bugs, of course, find cucurbit plantings wherever they may be--it's their life's goal. And they are difficult to control organically. I've seen adults squirted right in the face with 1% Rotenone (a certified organic grower's most powerful weapon), and they weren't killed by it (although midges and other non/adult stages usually are). Unfortunately, what you're doing pretty much has to be done for the life of the planting--or until you see no more squash bugs. THEN, if you will, when the plants are about to stop bearing, leave a squash plant or two (and a pumpkin plant, also) with a fruit or two on them, as a TRAP crop. Any squash bugs left will gather in that small area, where they can be dealt with as you see fit (I heard of a guy in Kentucky who sprayed his trap crop with Moonshine and set it on fire).


 o
RE: Squash bugs

Check Our Garden Pests website for control methods. When you get there click on "Organic Pest Management" and then scroll down to the pest you need information on.

Here is a link that might be useful: Our Garden Pests


 o
RE: Squash bugs

  • Posted by vstech z7 Charlotte (My Page) on
    Fri, Jul 8, 05 at 7:04

I thought my invasion of squash buggs was bad. but I missed some eggs, and WOW their offspring sure can desimate a crop in a hurry. NOTHING could have prepared me for them. keep up the battle for the eggs, because you do not want to deal with the immature SB check out my post about pumpkin bug question. UGLY!


 o
RE: Squash bugs

  • Posted by Vgkg 7-Va Tidewater (My Page) on
    Fri, Jul 8, 05 at 7:30

Besides zeroing in on the adults and egg masses, take a gander underneath the oldest dying leaves that are usually resting on the ground. You may be surprised to find many nymphs under there waiting to get hardened off enough to keep the cycle going, and going, and going...
It seems that the Squash Vine Borers will do the job for you by killing the plant and taking it away from the Squash Bugs...and their friends the Cuke Beetles :o(


 o
RE: Squash bugs

These bugs (squash bugs)are the most maddening garden insect I think. Even for non-organic gardeners, who reach for the Sevin at a moments notice, they are nearly impossible to eradicate. I plant every year, and wait every year for the squash bugs to come and kill my zuchinni and cucumber beetles to do their number on my cukes. This year, I've only seen, a few cuke beetles and two squash bugs (knocking on wood, typing this)when lo and behold (as mentioned by Vgkg) the vine borer has created the first fatality among my zuchinni! I can't win with cucurbits/squash!


 o
RE: Squash bugs

Vgkg: 10-4, on that (the dried leaves, that is...and generally dried because the juice has been sucked out by the squash bugs). I used to grow Squash and other cucurbits on a large scale (acres), and the more cucurbits you have, the more attraction for squash bugs, naturally. One thing I'll say about them--they're not particular about the cucurbit they infest. I had a half-acre, or so, of ornamental gourds, and they swarmed on them as much as the 5 acres of squash and melons. I've posted on here more than a few times that the only way to deal with such infestations is TRAP crops--particularly when grown on a large scale (or when you have a LARGE infestation, no matter how large the planting). I'd leave a patch of cucurbits maybe 10' by 10', and all those 5 or 6 acres of squash bugs would be condensed in that area. How much easier is that to deal with?? It's a no-brainer. And as they Winter over in debris and brush, etc. (some entomologists report a migration, of sorts, as I recall. I did a paper on squash bugs years ago), if you don't reduce their numbers before Winter, you'll have a worse problem the next year. And Vgkg is exactly right--not only do the immature squash bugs hide under the low-lying leaves (dead or not, particularly those in contact with the ground), but whole FAMILIES of them are under those leaves. It's where they spend their time when not sucking on the stems. When cucurbits are very young, the adults suck the juice right where the base of the stem meets the soil. You'll find them there 90% of the time--you have to look closely, as they blend in with the stem. Then as the plants grow, they begin laying eggs under those bottom leaves Vgkg mentioned, (the adults and young squash bugs sucking the life out of them), and that becomes their home. As the plants grow taller, the eggs are deposited under ANY leaves, but they still retreat to the bottom leaves during the heat of the day. When you get a HUGE infestation (on when you TRAP them), they're everywhere on the plant--from top to bottom. That's a sickening sight, as the plant wilts before your eyes because of the heavy infestation (but that's definitely the time to kill them all).


 o
RE: Squash bugs

That Kentucky man is my hero. Burn you suckers!!!!! Mwha..Ha..Ha..Ha (Eval Laugh)

Ok, on a slightly saner note you can try laying boards or bricks down around the squash plant, the bugs will sometimes take shelter underneath them during the day. It makes for a good trap.

As for rotenone even as an organic gardener I would rather put Seven on my garden than use rotenone again. I used the stuff once and I think it made me more miserable than some of the bugs. Some of the powder blew back on my hands and arms and really irritated my skin.

Good luck with the hand picking, I could never keep up.


 o
RE: Squash bugs

Zach_23: Sevin is, of course, a chemical poison. Years ago
it used to be considered one of the "safer" chemical poisons, and was much used (though not by organic growers). In recent years it has been proven that there's nothing "safe" about it...a chemical poison is a chemical poison. Regarding the reaction you got to Rotenone--even though it's an organic control, I certainly wouldn't use dust when it's windy--and in handling any such substance, I'd wear latex or rubber gloves. Rotenone also is sold as a condensed liquid--you usually add 3 or 4 tablespoons to a gallon of water, and spray it on the target crop. 'Course, I wouldn't do that on a windy day, either.


 o
RE: Squash Bugs

Wrong word: "concentrated" liquid, not condensed liquid. Brain shuts down after dark.


 o
RE: Squash bugs

marylandmojo, where ever did you hear that Carbaryl was ever considered one of the "safer" poisons. It was used, and misused much, like Chlordane which was banned, but the only people that consider this safe were the manufacturers.


 o
RE: Squash bugs

Where did I hear it? I heard it from all those who used it, and I read it in USDA bulletins and publications. It was always touted by the USDA, by its manufacturers, and by those who sprinkled "Sevin dust" on every insect problem, to be quite harmless, and the "milder" of the chemical poisons, as I posted (realize, also, that this was at a time
in our near-distant past when DDT and Diazanon were also in everyday use). For those who may be unaware, the USDA, in its bulletins about specific vegetable crops, ALWAYS used to recommend controls (read "chemical poisons"), generally in order of toxicity, and always rated Sevin as lowest in toxicity. I happen to have been raised in the country, and have seen dog owners (of multiple dogs, such as packs of fox hounds and deer hounds) take Sevin in their bare hands and rub it all over their dogs, and under their hair, as a flea and tick preventive--and I mean RECENTLY. There are people who STILL buy into Sevin being safe...("it's ONLY Sevin dust"...no telling how many times I've heard that). I heard THIS morning, on Baltimore T.V., a garden expert show a big bag of Sevin, and propose its use for fleas and ticks on dogs and cats. I've routinely heard gardeners, upon noticing potato bugs on their crop, say, "Well, time to get out the Sevin dust". Anyone who's been around as long as I have knows that its toxicity has always been downplayed, and that it's our "friendly" poison that we put on our dogs and cats and vegetables. You just saw someone post on this thread that they'd rather use Sevin dust that Rotenone. So, that's where I heard it--and continue to hear it.


 o
RE: Squash Bugs...P.S.

P.S.: Seems a good brainwashing lasts a good, long while...it was not until Rachel Carlson wrote "Silent Spring", in 1962, that the average person questioned the validity of slinging poison all over the Universe, and the consequences, thereof (particularly, its effect on the environment). Fortunately, for me, my father and his father before him (both gardeners), had the good sense not to dump poison on the food they intended to eat. Since it also makes sense to me, I have carried on that tradition, and taught it to my children.


 o
RE: Squash bugs

  • Posted by vstech z7 Charlotte (My Page) on
    Sun, Jul 10, 05 at 19:43

I have never and will never use any poisons, no matter how "safe" their manufacturers claim them to be. However, this years' escapade of squash buggs and vine borers has me sick. I just came in from the garden and found almost all my plants to be infested with both. the little yellow and black spotted crawlers annoy me no end, and then the leaves all wilt and I notice the rotted vine. I carve out the dead parts, and Pow HUGE vine borers and a bunch of little black beetle looking things. all go into the soapy water bucket. I hope they go away, but I know they won't
anyone know what they look like before they bore in? I would like to catch them before they become large monsters...


 o
RE: Squash bugs

My squash bugs seem to be a bit under control. I've found a few adults but no eggs. I've used DE and also rotenone power. It's the cucumber beetles that are really causing problems now, I've never seen anything like this before. My husband build an arch for my gourds to crawl on. I shook this arch at dusk to see how many beetles would fly.......thousands.........I was just sick. I'm onto rotenone liquid now. I don't like using it but it's that or give up my garden to them this year. They have been leaving the gourd plants alone but devouring the blooms. They even started nibbling on some of the small gourds so I have most of them in tea bags for protection. I hope this doesn't go on much longer...it's oh so sad.


 o
RE: Squash bugs

mogardening: Don't want to sound like a stuck record, but you SHOULD leave a trap crop at the end of the season and KILL THEM ALL. Leave a Gourd or two--if the vines are long,
and that's too much area, cut some of the longer vines so you'll have them in a small area--and take your wrath out on them as you see fit. I helped a friend trap a bunch, once--they were all over every cucurbit he had, and he had failed to EVER deal with them, so the infestation was huge. At the end of the year, I told him to leave a few Watermelon plants--his last cucurbit crop. I swear, there were CBs on top of CBS on his plants, and they were eating the skin off the last 4 or 5 Watermelons and leaving them naked (they'll do the same with Gourds). He mixed up something (probably more potent than he should), and killed about 5,000 of them, I'd say. Next year, his earliest Spring cucurbit crop was 4 Cucumber plants, another trap crop to kill any that may have overwintered. He said he trapped and killed what appeared to be about 50 CBs. Thirty days after planting his trap crop, he planted his (late) main crop. He told me he found approximately 90% fewer CBs, the whole rest of the season (than the year before). I wish it would work like that all the time!


 o
RE: Squash bugs

Okay, for a trap crop, lets say a couple of zucchnis. What do I do? Do I keep spraying the rest of my garden as needed but not the trap crop? Then when do I do the big kill off? Should I also spray someting to protect my gourds, pumpkins and melons? I wonder if surround would work?


 o
RE: Squash bugs

  • Posted by Vgkg 7-Va Tidewater (My Page) on
    Mon, Jul 11, 05 at 7:19

Last autumn my only remaining pumpkin (after vine death) looked like a lifeboat for thousands of SBs. It was more brown than orange, but ended up white with "dust". RIP SBs!


 o
RE: Squash bugs

VGKG- what white dust?? DE?

So here is a question. When you say "end of the season" when exactly do you mean? I was pulling out pumkin vines in early November last year. Is this going to be too late for a trap crop? I planted over 200 gourd and pumpkin seeds 2 weeks ago so that they won't mature in Sept. like they did last year.


 o
RE: Squash bugs

Anyone having any luck against these squash bugs?
I've just been out plucking hundreds of thes things that have recently devestated my Zucs, yellows, and Cucs.
I'm about to go out and spray some Neem mixture but I'm not anticipating saving any of these. I've even found these guys on my tomatoes. How can I protect for next year?
Burn the area? If so I'll need to wait on some neighboring yeild before doing so.
I found these suckers in every stage by the thousands!!


 o
RE: Squash bugs

Yes I have "squashed" the squash bugs, last year they completely killed my garden, this year i used neem oil, works like a charm , spray every two weeks, and i have no squash bugs at all

good luck


 o
RE: Squash bugs

Thanks for the hope, reading the earlier responces I was very concerned even about next years crops. I had used neem about once a month last year and did not have many insect probs. I should have kept that up. I have neemed rather heavily but have not been back down in two days, I have watered since the day after. I'll post findings.
I have cauliflower, Brocoli, cabbage plants, and spinachh seed I was hoping to plant but I assume they will be munched as well. These plants are not doing well either. I am considering tilling another patch away from the first for these. How far away would be safe?
Thanks for any help


 o
RE: Squash bugs

SB and SVB have destroyed my small planting of cukes, zucs and yellows. I jus pulled pumpkins out too b/c SVB was all over them and I gave up. I had used neem several times through July, but had not heard about the 2nd hatch - that explains it as I had no real problem with SBs until a few weeks ago. I am pulling out the rest of the planting today, but plan to save a trap crop plant and sevin the living daylights out of the things once my tomatoes are done (nearby). Anyone know how to kill the overwintering in the soil - do I just till the upper portions of soil or do I also need to apply some sort of liquid chem? Thanks!


 o
RE: Squash bugs

This is the first year my family and I tried gardening. We planted a potager garden with squash, gourd, pumpkin, watermelon, yellow pepper, bell pepper, tomatoe, corn and more. In a large 3 tierred castle rock area we planted broccoli, honeydew and strawberry. Still another area had cantaloup and more squash. Our garden grew and grew. I didn't know what a squash bug was until it was too late. I though the heat killed the pumpkin and gourd. Then I noticed the squash plants were completely covered with these things. There were too many to squash by foot (bringing in ants afterwards) I removed all of the squash plants and began spraying everything else with neem. It's been working, but not fast enough. I used an outdoor blower/vacuum to suck the dead stuff off the ground and found the bugs get sucked up too. I tried carefully sucking the leaves and areas of all my plants and have seen a big difference! We even used a portable hand vacuum and emptied the contents into a bucket of soapy water. I was surprised it picked up adults as well as little ones that I hadn't seen before. This only took 1 day, and I think the number of bugs now isn't enough to kill the plants anymore. I am going to continue using neem and sucking them. Hopefully, I'll be able to start looking for the eggs next. Does neem work on all bugs, or do I need to learn which bugs are good and which are not?


 o
RE: Squash bugs

I've been doing the 'trap' method. I had two rows of squash and zucchini, and as all are reporting, they're really bad this year. So I've been pulling each plant, and then I have this Bernz-o-matic torch with the long nozzle, and do a burn on the plant and then all the compost and mulch nearby, where they hide. Now I'm down to one plant in each row, so I'll give them a couple days to group up again, then give them a burn. I also use this mini-rake to turn over the surface soil, and burn that in case of eggs.


 o
RE: Squash bugs

I am getting a dust buster! My chickens turn their heads and close their little eyes when I offer them a SB but still they do eat them. I heard wood ash around the plant works. Diotomaecious earth slows them down it seems. I'm OG Gardner but the intensity of the SB and then the heartbreaking borers is enough to make one wonder.


 o
RE: Squash bugs

Try Neem oil to kill squash bugs. You can get it at your local organic gardening center. This is the most effective thing I have found so far. Also, as noted earlier in the thread, soapy water is good as a helper - but wont always kill them. Neem oil is the best way to go in my experience.


 o
organic pest control from walmart

Almost forgot - as an added note:
if you dont have an organic gardening center near you, Walmart sells a product made by Garden Safe which has neem oil in it. It controls bugs, mites and fungus - all i one product that is organic!
So if you dont have an organic gardening center but you have a Walmart - you can still get what you need! (o:


 o
RE: Squash bugs

In mid June I saw a few CBs on my pumpkin plants, and I sprayed them with home made insectide. At the same time, my hubby got me some petunia. I planted near to the pumpkin plants. I didn't notice CBs anymore. Afterward, I don't where I have read petunia repels CBs. I don't know it's ture or not. But stupid me didn't know the SVB moths were flying around. I thought they were good looking moths, didn't bother to do anything. Well, SVBs haven't kill my plants yet. Sadly, I have to watch them slowly dying. I can't pull them out because their fruits still not mature. Hopefully, I can harvest them before they die.

Can surround at home can help?

Snow


 o
RE: Squash bugs- Organic pest control

I found some stuff on Google called mr. malcolm's squash bug eliminator that kills eggs and all the rest of them. I've tried everything else in the past but this stuff works. I tried neem oil but it left a taste after using it for a while. Little devils are persistent. There are other pesticides out there but I'm afraid to eat thee veggies.


 o
RE: Squash bugs - luvmygardn

luvmygardn: Hi, just to let you know I used Neem Oil on both silverleaf-whitefly and the 2-spot spider mite. It didn't work on either of them.


 o
RE: Squash bugs

I use glue traps and my little garden helpers, Guineas! They eat all my pest and do not scratch up the garden like chickens.


 o
RE: Squash bugs

What about planting zucchini, etc in containers instead of directly in the garden? Does that prevent squash bugs?


 o
RE: Squash bugs

No it won't, They will be found just as easily in containers.


 o
RE: Squash bugs

  • Posted by anney Georgia 8 (My Page) on
    Mon, Jul 13, 09 at 8:38

I planted two zucchinis in containers on my deck, and the squash bugs found them. They've been awful!

I am able to control cucumber beetles with a mixture of clove oil and red dye #28 (found in dental disclosing tablets), but nothing I know controls squash bugs.


 o
RE: Squash bugs

I grow zucchinis in containers last couple of years. I've lost some of them to squash bugs and vine borers.

Best way to control them, I've found:
1. fill a cup with soapy water
2. grab a spoon
3. Go out to the yard and spray the vines with water, squash bugs will flee to higher ground.
4. hold spoon upside down and flick the squash bugs into soapy water with the handle.

The squash bugs will drown. The soap in the water breaks the surface tension so that the bugs sink below the water level and die. Soap might also help facilitate the drowning too, but it works very well.

If you don't catch them by early July, you're going to have lots of baby squash bugs that will probably wipe out your plant.

Also, are you rotating your plants each year? Planting in the same spot not only depletes the nutrients in the soil (weaker plants) but the bugs typically lay eggs that will be in the soil and know where to come back next year.

Nasturtium, mint, and radishes are also good companion plants for squash. Nasturtium will draw the squash bugs to it instead of squash plants (trap crop). I believe radishes and mint will deter squash bugs.

Squash bugs were my most hated bug until I planted fruit trees this year (cherry & apple trees). Now it's Japanese beetles!


 o
RE: Squash bugs

A year ago last fall I had a lot of squash bugs on squash and pumpkins. I made a concerted effort to kill every one of them at harvest time. At that time the remaining bugs will be on the remaining greenry and fruits. So stomp every one of them out by turning over leaves and fruits... and if you have a neighbor, try to do those too.

Did that work?...well I had almost none of the critters last year.


 o
RE: Squash bugs

I just had my entire garden of pumpkins destroyed by squash bugs. This is the first time in my life I ever tried to plant anything. I read on this site that if I used Castille soap cut up in water, it would kill the adults on contact. I sprayed and sprayed for days, killing all the adults I could and destroying as many eggs. Now all the plants are dead. Why does everyone keep saying to destroy them so you don't have them next year. I didn't have any last year. I had no garden. They came from no where, so why would it matter if you destroy them? they will just come from somewhere else! IS THERE ANY WAY TO KILL THEM AT ALL? I may have one or two plants still alive?


 o
RE: Squash bugs

Squash bugs can fly long distances to find your tasty garden. I do not use soap as a spray, since it also hurts the plants. It does work well to drown them in.

The only real solution I've found for them is to a) plant more than you need and b) daily quick bug hunts.


 o
RE: Squash bugs

There is a sneaky way to use rotenone without spraying it, which I don't recommend. You can plant jicama which has a natural concentration of rotenone as part of its chemistry. Only the root and immature pods are edible. Almost all bugs avoid it but it takes a lot of room. It's doubtful you will be able to harvest the jicama root unless you are pretty much frost free year round but it should last long enough to give you some seed for next year. It also has some very pretty flowers.


 o
RE: Squash bugs

I had my first garden last year. SB devoured my squash before moving on to my cucumbers. My neighbor said to squash them and leave the remains on the leaf, because they won't eat each other. However, I do not like to kill them. Does anyone know of any other bugs one may purchase, maybe natural predators of the squash bugs?


 o
RE: Squash bugs

An old timer told me to sprinkle a little sulfur in the ground where I plant my squash seed and the borer will not bother it. It works!


 o
RE: Squash bugs

Squash bugs are a terrific pain. One year, they decimated a 125 foot row of squash. There are a few things you can do - we use a combination of insecticidal spray, diatomaceous earth, Neem oil, old fashioned squishing and trap plants. I wrote about it in the link I added here.

Here is a link that might be useful: How to Kill Squash Bugs Organically


 o
RE: Squash bugs

I never have stink bug problems anymore since I started growing my squash up on a trellis. The bugs are so much more exposed so they are easy pickings for other insects and birds. Also using grass mulch encourages spiders which eat stink bugs.


 o
RE: Squash bugs

  • Posted by jolj 7b/8a-S.C.,USA (My Page) on
    Tue, Mar 8, 11 at 20:47

I have little problem with squash bugs, maybe this organic gardening makes plants stronger.
I hand pick the bugs & smash the eggs between my fingers as I weed the few weeds that find a crack in the mulch.
When the summer heat gets my summer squash, the SB move to my tomatoes & I pick them with the tomato horn worm.
I have less every year.
kept, THANKS for the sulfur trick.


 o
RE: Squash bugs

Here's one a friend told me: pick off the squash bugs, mash them or put in an old blender, put water on them & let stand for 2 or 3 days, strain off the liquid & use it as a spray on the squash. Haven't tried it but was told it would work. I'm presently using Neem oil.


 o
RE: Squash bugs

Thank you one and all for all the information....It's still a rotten situation to deal with. We just mixed up garlic, pepper and soap for the second round. (First round was removing eggs, physically.... We are talking of those pretty gold shiny dots that are laid mostly on the underside of the leaves in perfect symetry??) I have the powder from Garden Naturals, but am hesitating as I dislike resorting to chemicals..... so much unknown.

Any more advice???


 o
RE: Squash bugs

was trying to find an organic/safe way to rid myself of the SB I did,used a spray of soapy water,mutch to my chagrin the spray did major damage to the plants...from now on I will stick to the bucket of soap water method (no spray) lesson learned :(


 o
RE: Squash bugs

I also use neem oil though , knock on wood, less than I have in the past 2 years. I have also been spraying the plants with a blast of water on the stems and undersides of leaves to hopefully knock the bugs on the plants and give pest a "hostile" environment. I do this in the morning, and by mid morning I have a few birds come in and eat whats on the ground. I also have some frogs that take care of pest in the night time hours.


 o
RE: Squash bugs

Quite an old post with recent opinions re- squash bugs...
I may have even posted this earlier on this posting as I didn't read ALL of the responses, but this method has worked well for me the past 2-3 years here zone 7 Albuquerque: I plant the squash (zucchini) seed after June 1 as I had read somewhere the bugs lay their eggs mostly before that date. Though I have zucchini later but long after my neighbors here, I have had (cross my fingers!) no problem with those darn critters since I plant later! Any one else tried this? Local Ag. Extension people here when told of it said it may have some valid reasoning to it.


 o
RE: Squash bugs

I planted later than most but unfortunately before june 1st. My melons are now being eaten, so I was going to go pick up some more EcoSmart Organic insect killer from Walmart. We used it before the plants were established to try to kill bugs eating our cucumbers and peppers but unfortunately the plants were too young to tolerate it. Hopefully the thriving melons will tolerate it better. We are going to tackle them tomorrow, I will have to update with results.


 o
RE: Squash bugs

I am working on testing a "sticky trap" for squash bugs. So far, testing on this is going fairly well. I am hopeful to get the design perfected this year, but it may take some time next year. Hopefully, if everything goes well, it will be ready to market by sometime next year or at least by 2013. :)


 o
RE: Squash bugs

Near the end of the season the remaining bugs will be amassing on the remaining fruits and green leaves. This is your opportunity to rid them almost entirely....for years. Stomp on them totally.


 o
SBs in compost pile?

Is it true that the SBs (or SoBs, as I call them when I see them) will also live in your compost pile? denno above mentioned this, and I think I saw some when I was turning my pile yesterday.

If so, what does one do about it? Incinerate your compost pile?


 o
RE: Squash bugs

My compost bin has some resident spiders, but I haven't seen any SB's in there. Might there be a connection?


 o
RE: Squash bugs

My green bean plants are being destroyed by squash bugs, but many still have full grown beans on them-- are they safe to eat?


 o
RE: Squash bugs

well this is the first that I have had squash bugs, went out and hand picked them and threw them in a bucket of soapy water, so many of them, so I decided to try DE last night...went out this morning just 2 adults, no other sign of them, so far only one plant effected, I'm still checking and keeping an eye out on them. Hope this helps. :)


 o
RE: Squash bugs

Soap and water, you can pick them off and drop them in a bowl of soapy water, Or put it in a spray bottle and give "em a squirt. One squirt is all it takes.
Garlic oil, lemon oil work too.
** lay an old board in your garden near the squash plant. Squash bugs hide underneath the board. Early in the morning, lift the board and drop the collected bugs into a bowl of soapy water.


 o
RE: Squash bugs

SW Ohio had spring-like weather this winter. The buggers didn't die over the winter.

Between the squash bugs, squash beetles (spotted type) and corn maggots that look like flies in adulthood, I was out there several times a day trying to be organic: Brushing the eggs off leaves and killing, picking off bugs and killing, spraying insecticidal soap, spraying garlic tea and sprinkling flour that was supposed to clog the digestive system of nymphs.

Last week, the nymphs were about 5 per inch per leaf. They were also jumping into my shoes. I cried "Uncle!" Sevin was used. They're all gone now, but my cucumbers were hit by "yellow vine", a virus the buggers carry. No cure for that.

Sorry, but next year Sevin will be applied to the soil, young squash and cukes early -- before the blossoms, and before the problem starts.

The rest of my beds can be organic.


 o
RE: Squash bugs

I found that dishwashing liquid mixed with water is very effective. I used Dawn dishwashing liquid and mixed it with water in my hand sprayer using about the amount I would use to wash dishes. It doesn't affect the eggs but will kill the squash bug within a couple of minutes if you spray it directly on the bug.


 o
RE: Squash bugs

If Dawn Dishwashing Detergent does kill any insect that fast think what it could do to you. Dawn is made from non renewable reosurces and is, therefore, not an acceptable organic product.


 o
RE: Squash bugs

what is the procedure for using diatomaceous earth around/on squash/zucc/cukes? do you dust the plant, the ground, both? HELP!!!!!
also, i'm getting neem oil today, can i use them both together?


 o
RE: Squash bugs

  • Posted by LKZZ 7b (My Page) on
    Sun, Jun 16, 13 at 16:39

I planted dill next to my squash plants...I have had some SB's but not too many to control by hand (so far). I think I may try to place dill cuttings around the base of the plants. Dill has a very strong scent (yummy) so perhaps that will help.

Dill and Lemon Balm

Squash bugs are repelled by dill and lemon balm. Dill also deters aphids and spider mites to a certain degree. (Dill also attracts tomato horn worm and should not be planted as a companion to tomatoes). Lemon balm repels many other garden pests as well. (Crushed leaves, rubbed onto the skin, repel mosquitoes).

Here is a link that might be useful: Flowers That Repel Garden Pests


 o
RE: Squash bugs

i have dill, lemon balm, oregano, cat mint and nasturtiums all intermingled w/ my squash, zucc and cucumbers... and if they did help, i shudder to think how many squash bugs and cuc beetles would have been in my raised beds! i spend hours per day out there w/ a rubber glove on, squishing bugs, eggs, flicking them into soapy water... have neemed and diatomaceous earthed continuously... it has been ridiculously rainy in this part of ga this spring/summer, so i'm sure all that i have put on has been quickly washed off. i planted 3 zucc and 3 yellow squash... i got maybe 10 zucc and 3 or 4 squash off... the plants are done. i'm going to leave them in the ground as a trap crop to keep the sb and cbs from moving to my beautiful cucs, which i have trained up a cattle panel.
i totally feel ya, DMallaun. i'm tempted to 7 the hell outta them... and i probably would have, but i've seen some beautiful spiders making webs on the plants and a nymph Wheel Bug, which stayed my hand!!


 o
RE: Squash bugs

I kept waiting for the squash bugs to hit and they finally came this week. Neem oil mixed with water in a bottle sprayer did the trick, disoriented them, they stalled in their tracks and then died, couldn't be happier...boy what a chore though.


 o
RE: Squash bugs

If the Neem Oil product you purchase is a concentrate and the label gives instructions to dilute with water, as well as how much, that is okay, but if the product is already mixed adding more water may well dilute it to not effective amounts. Always read the label on the product you buy before using it.
Squash bug adults overwinter in the soil, in garden debris, in "weedy" areas along the garden, some of the same places that predators overwinter, and that may include the compost pile although I have never seen any there.

Here is a link that might be useful: Organic control of squash pests


 o
RE: Squash bugs

I have been so frustrated with these bugs that I decided this year I'm not growing zucchini, acorn or pumpkin squashes. I have had infestations the last couple of years and am tired of fighting them.
I have used both the soap & water mixture as well as neem oil mixture to some success but I just had enough.

I planted butternut squash which is supposed to be resistant to the squash bug, covered early on with row cover to give the plants a chance to get growing, and so far I have only found one bug and I squashed it. So far lots of fruit and leaves look good. I surrounded the plants with nasturtiums as this is supposed to help as well.

Then I got brave and planted a couple of seeds of 'Ronde de Nice', an heirloom zucchini I had left from last year at the end of June. They are now about to flower and I noticed a squash bug nymph yesterday. I couldn't find any others though. Oh well, if I get 1 or 2 zucchinis I will be happy.


 o
RE: Squash bugs

I use a combo of neem and diatomaceous earth, and therefore don't see many squash bugs. They seem to be here and there sometimes-not a lot of them. I just kill them by hand when I do see them...

Oh, and I'm growing a delicious and decently productive heirloom zucchini called Tatume (Botanical Interests). Neither squash bugs nor vine borers bother it-very weird but awesome!


 o
RE: Squash bugs

@Stellabee - I'm always looking for new varieties to try and 'Tahume' is now on my list for next year.

Thanks


 o
RE: Squash bugs

We just found our crop infested with squash bugs. This being our first crop we were not familiar with these pests. After doing lots of research on them and seeing what we could do we chose to try something organic and we took the time to comb the plants first and find them. When we did we had a small bowl of water with a small amount of dish soap in it and placed the bug in the bowl (where they drowned). As for the eggs we used tape and pulled them off the leafs that way. However to our surprise those boogers were on both sides of the leaves. So we had to go over it again. Then we watered the plants and what we missed came to the top to dry. And we caught them as well and drowned them. We caught today 33 adults and some 400-500 eggs (no exaggeration). We will be doing this daily for the next couple weeks. Then we will be moving our crop next year to another area and take precautions from the beginning. Making sure to plant things around them that repel the SB. Good luck with these things.


 o
RE: Squash bugs

We used catnip while the plants were still young. It seemed to have deterred them long enough to give us a pretty good season. There are some pics and a little more info on this link.

Here is a link that might be useful: Catnip & Squash Bugs


 o
RE: Squash bugs

I am having infestation problems on my zucchini plants right now, but so far, it seems like the squash bugs don't like my white pattypan squash. Has anyone else noticed that they prefer some squash varieties over others? I guess I will go buy Neem oil and join the fight against them, but I hate using any chemicals in my garden.


 o
RE: Squash bugs

The only organic control of squash bugs and other bugs that are on plants needing pollination, is hand picking or shop vac. Anything that will kill the bug will kill pollinators too.
Practices that help are rotation, covering until they flower, leaf inspection and very healthy plants.


 o
RE: Squash bugs

I had squash bugs and vine borers every year and have such a small garden that rotation was no help. I grew tromboncino squash this year and love it. I haven't had any vine borers this year and very few squash bugs. the vines have grown up a 6 foot trellis and have had great production. I love that it grows vertical to preserve space in my small garden. The taste is not very different than the "normal" zucchini I used to grow.


 o
RE: Squash bugs

i gave up on squash and zucchini after last year's battle. i spent HOURS, DAILY picking the squash bugs off, squishing the eggs and nymphs. i held them at bay for a while, but the vine borers finally got me. so i i gave up. i may try the tromboncino like jules8 did.


 o
RE: Squash bugs

if you grow trombocino, build a sturdy trellis or use a chain link fence. about 5 seeds sprouted for me and in the photo I took about 2 weeks ago they are on the right.


 o
RE: Squash bugs

In Florida the squash bugs and vine borers are busy bugs. I plant my zucchini early in January or February, in a self watering pot on wheels. I cover the soil with black plastic and use tin foil as a barrier on the vine. The bugs don't seem to like the foil on the stem. At night the zucchini get rolled into the garage. After it warms up in the morning, I roll them outside. My zucchini have produced quite a bit by the time the bugs wake up and find them. In the fall I use the pots and floating row covers to keep the bugs out. If the cold comes too early, I roll he pots back into the garage at night. I baby tomatoes in pots too. Lucky me to be in central florida. Who needs a greenhouse? My garage works just fine.


 o
RE: Squash bugs

Good normal command regarding lead pages pesky insects requires utilizing several different approaches. Yellow summer squash are generally extremely appealing to lead pages pesky insects, because usually are buttercup lead pages and substantial pumpkins. As soon as plants are developed because harvest plant life, these kinds of attractive pressures needs to be covered using floating row addresses right up until they will learn to grow seriously. Additionally you incorporate the use of a tiny properly regarding earlier yellowish lead pages as a trap harvest for lead pages pesky insects. As soon as numerous lead pages pesky insects possess obtained around the plant life, location any carrier around these individuals and draw these individuals upward. Take just one seed at any given time, which in turn forces living lead pages pesky insects to relocate to nearby plant life.


 o
RE: Squash bugs

Yep. Good stuff. It's good to know we can trust our chemical industries to look out for us.


 o Post a Follow-Up

Please Note: Only registered members are able to post messages to this forum.

    If you are a member, please log in.

    If you aren't yet a member, join now!


Return to the Organic Gardening Forum

Information about Posting

  • You must be logged in to post a message. Once you are logged in, a posting window will appear at the bottom of the messages. If you are not a member, please register for an account.
  • Please review our Rules of Play before posting.
  • Posting is a two-step process. Once you have composed your message, you will be taken to the preview page. You will then have a chance to review your post, make changes and upload photos.
  • After posting your message, you may need to refresh the forum page in order to see it.
  • Before posting copyrighted material, please read about Copyright and Fair Use.
  • We have a strict no-advertising policy!
  • If you would like to practice posting or uploading photos, please visit our Test forum.
  • If you need assistance, please Contact Us and we will be happy to help.


Learn more about in-text links on this page here