Saturday, July 26, 2014

Ongoing Issues

I never realized there were so many things that could go wrong with a garden!

The first problem, which I've talked about before, has been cucumber beetles and squash bugs.  At first I was just smushing the eggs whenever I found them, but they were still getting out of control.

Cucumber beetle eggs and a mature squash beetle.

Phase 2 of the control measures was sticky traps and neem oil.  They sell yellow sticky traps specifically for cucumber beetles, but you can only order them online and they're about $20 for 2!  I found some yellow sticky fly traps at Tractor Supply Company in town, and decided to try those.  They were $7 for 2!  Unfortunately I caught a lot more than just cucumber beetles, but they do seem to have worked.  I also applied neem oil to the squash, pumpkin, and cucumber plants for a few weeks.  It can kill pollinators though, so I've decided to quit applying it.  I've been finding a lot less egg clusters, so hopefully I made a dent in the population.

My sticky trap.

For some reason, the cucumber beetles don't seem to be laying eggs on the cucumbers.  It is weird, but I'm okay with it!

Good-looking cucumbers!

The squash plants had quit producing fruits, I think it may have been because of the heat.  Luckily it has cooled down, and I've seen a couple of baby squash on the plants.

Crowded squash.

The newest problem is the tomatoes!  Several of the plants were starting to yellow at the bottom, which can be a sign of several different diseases (mostly blights and wilts) as well as many nutrient deficiencies.  I decided to be safe and remove all of the yellow branches, and put them in the trash (not the compost!).  I'm also going to give them several treatments of compost tea and maybe some other fertilizers, just in case it is a deficiency.

Yellowing on the tomato plants.

Close-up of the yellowing leaves.

Pruned plant.

No comments: