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What's eating my asparagus besides me?

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What's eating my asparagus besides me?

Post  ander217 on 4/26/2010, 9:23 am

I went to my asparagus bed yesterday (not a SFG bed) and found my younger plants covered with masses of tiny, black, soft-bodied insects. I found a couple of asparagus beetles, too, which we haven't had in years and years, but I don't think the globs of soft, black insects were beetle larvae.

They weren't green like aphids, and they looked much smaller than aphids, although with my 55 y/o eyes, I couldn't see them clearly enough to describe, so they could have been a smaller type, I suppose. They just kind of mushed up when I tried to pick a few to hold close up.

They are eating the tops off of all my first-year plants, and they are on the ferns of the already-established plants. I looked on the 'net but couldn't find anything like this mentioned as an asparagus pest. I wish I could post a photo, but I'm so techno-challenged I have no idea how to do it. Maybe one of my kids can walk me through it over the phone. In the meantime, does this description ring a bell with anyone?
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Re: What's eating my asparagus besides me?

Post  elliephant on 4/29/2010, 10:41 pm

Looks kinds of like tiny poop pellets? Had that on my tomatoes a few times and am still trying to figure it out. Not sure if it's the same thing you're talking about...if/when I see it again I'll take a pic and post it so you can compare.

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What's eating my asparagus besides me?

Post  ander217 on 4/30/2010, 8:48 am

I've been checking my plants daily, and smashing any of the critters I find, but apparently I missed a few here and there, because when I checked yesterday I saw a couple of what definitely look to be asparagus beetle larvae.

I guess I was seeing them in a tiny stage in such masses that they looked black instead of the usual charcoal gray.

So, I think the mystery is solved and they are asparagus beetle larvae.

Thanks for your reply. If you're seeing "poop" pellets on your tomatoes, is it green and sometimes clumped together? Are some of the leaves disappearing? If so, you may have a tomato hornworm lurking on the stems or foliage. They are green and hard to spot unless you really search for them.
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Re: What's eating my asparagus besides me?

Post  elliephant on 4/30/2010, 9:47 am

Nope, it's black and clumped together. And it seems I see it when we've had rain.
Anyway, glad you've solved your mystery so you can move forward it getting rid of it.

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Re: What's eating my asparagus besides me?

Post  ander217 on 5/2/2010, 3:50 pm

Hmmm...if it's not a tomato hornworm then your clump has me stumped.

Good luck in finding the source.
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Re: What's eating my asparagus besides me?

Post  camprn on 5/2/2010, 6:58 pm

Could it possible be an insect egg nest? i've never grown asparagus so I'm not in the know.
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