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First losses

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First losses

Post  Weedless_ on Sat 31 Jul 2010 - 11:27

I am in a war zone. Today one of my beloved and much treasured watermelons fell down with no particular reason (at least obvious to me), other than just not being able to carry its own weight. I guess I was a day or two late with the sling. Second watermelon is still holding on, and will be put in a sling today.

My pumpkin got attacked by vine borer. I was checking every day, and didn't find anything until just now. It was suspiciously wilting on every hot day, even though no other plants did so. I read that day time wilting is ok, as long as it "perks up" after the heat is over, and it has been doing so regularly, so I guess I let my guard down, and there we go. It's yellow, and some leaves started wilting for good. That's when I looked down and saw frass, very clear. Not a lot of it, so I am still hoping that somehow I can get rid of the larvae. I am thoroughly disgusted, but I think I'll try cutting the bugger out and see if I can salvage my pumpkin. My fear is, that the bastards will get the squash as well, which is right next to a pumpkin. Oh, dang. I thought I had it easy, so now I got my portion of reality.
Off I go to get the knife.
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Re: First losses

Post  camprn on Sat 31 Jul 2010 - 12:06

Good luck with that, Let us know how it goes.
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Re: First losses

Post  Weedless_ on Sat 31 Jul 2010 - 13:07

Well, the verdict is, 2/3 of the pumpkin is lost, it was beyond repair. The remaining 1/3 of the plant had frass at almost every leaf joint. I decided to keep it, and pierced it with two pins all over, hoping to minimize the larvae population. In any case, common sense tells me, I should keep the damaged vine, to prevent them from entering squash, which looks good at this time. I have read the squash bug "rankings" of the plants, and pumpkin is number 1 on their list of delicacies, zucchini and summer squash being second. So I am hoping they'll either die by piercing or finish off the pumpkin which may buy me some time with the squash.
Luckily it's the only bed with squashes, so this is where they'll stop. And next season, I am moving the boxes to another location, so the overwintering eggs won't bother the new place.
I placed the remaining water melon in a sling. No more stupid in this garden Smile
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Update from the war zone

Post  Weedless_ on Mon 2 Aug 2010 - 6:24

Well, my poor amputee pumpkin keep coming back every morning, and started throwing new shoots.
I scraped all the eggs off the leaves (there was one on each squash leaf) that I could find - spent couple of hours hunting them, and scraped all the frass from every entry I could see.
After poking holes in the entire length of the pumpkin stem with two big pins, I was satisfied knowing that I killed at least one of the worms.
This morning all the entryways were dried up, and no new frass coming out, except for one hole. I did some more voodoo with pins, and hopefully this completes this round of military action. I am going to head to a nursery and buy BT. Since we are going to be gone for a week, I don't want to leave the garden without protection.
On a squash plant, I only found one leaf that had an entry, and the bugger didn't make it all the way to the main stem yet, so I chopped the leaf off, and could see through the leaf stem that the bugger was there. In the trash it went. Other than that, squashes had eggs, but no larvae yet. Keeping my fingers crossed.
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