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Flea beetles - pits

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Flea beetles - pits

Post  Retired Member 1 on 5/26/2010, 2:43 pm

I went out to water this morning and found little shiny black beetles all over the Kentucky Wonder plants. When my shadow fell over them, they scattered quicker than any beetle I'd ever seen. Turns out they are flea beetles and apparently hop. They also damage beans by chewing holes in the leaves. Argghhh!!! I dosed the ones I could find with Neem oil -- hope that gets them but good. This has been just about the worse gardening spring I've ever had as far as pests are concerned. It was a harsh winter (by our standards), so supposedly there should be fewer pests. Not true! Thanks for letting me vent.

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Re: Flea beetles - pits

Post  martha on 5/26/2010, 9:50 pm

I've never used Neem before, but until last year, I never had to care if or how much I harvested.

I would be interested in knowing how effective it is.
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Re: Flea beetles - pits

Post  Retired Member 1 on 5/27/2010, 9:09 am

I've only started using Neem oil this year myself. So far I am impressed. It's both a fungicide and insecticide. I couldn't find any flea beetles on the bean plants this morning. What I like about Neem oil is it is actually used internally for humans so is about the safest stuff around. So far it has worked for cucumber beetles, flea beetles, and "something" that was chewing on the tomatoes (never saw the culprit but it didn't come back). I also dosed a squash plant that I thought might be developing powderly mildew. I either mis-diagnosed or the Neem oil worked.

And a little bit goes a lot way. 1 ounce per gallon. I mixed up a quart spray bottle with a scant 2 tsps. and still haven't used it all in over a month.

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Re: Neem oil

Post  GloriaG on 5/27/2010, 10:06 am

Hi belfrybat,

I have used Neem oil regularly on my orchid collection for a number of years.




It does a great job as a fungicide and is OK as an insecticide. For best results, you should mix it with a few drops of dish soap as a "wetting solution".

If applied regularly it will make leaves turn mottled. Not harmful, just unsightly. So I use it sparingly.

Depending on where you are located, you also might also need to be careful that you don't apply it in the heat of the day. It can cause the leaves to burn. Best time to apply is early morning so the leaves can dry before mid day.

Hope this helps.
Gloria

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