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Author Topic: What is eating/killing my squash, canteloupe, and watermelon plants  (Read 3044 times)
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davidjrtx
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« on: October 15, 2010, 04:32:01 PM »

Something has been and is killing my squash. cantaloupe, cucumber and water melon plants not sure what it is or what to do..

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Massey Ferguson 231, Nolt's RB-448 Mulch Layer, Countyline Tiller 6', Leinbach 60" Bedder, Earthway Seeder, Hatfield Transplanter, Countyline Middlebuster, Countyline Subsoiler, Countyline Cultivator, Rhino 60

Willis, Tx
crazygardener
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« Reply #1 on: October 15, 2010, 04:36:02 PM »

Probably squash bugs.  Look at the center of the plant and see if you don't see a bunch of grey/white long bugs.  They will suck the vines dry till they shrivel up and die.  Also cucumber beetles are bad too.  They look like lady bugs, only green with black spots.  I would get some orthomax, and spray spray spray.  You can give a good dosing with DE, and it will kill some of them, but they are so bad, you won't get them all.  Have you looked on the back of leaves and seen clusters of brown/copper collered eggs?  Yep, I'd spray with orthomax.  Them little critters can get down under the stalks and vines and hide, and it just takes them like a day or two to wipe out your crop.

Crazy
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davidjrtx
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« Reply #2 on: October 15, 2010, 04:50:03 PM »

Ok yea the squash bugs they look like stink bugs? There everywhere, sucking on my tomatoes, also saw a couple of those spotted bugs. This is not related to that but I have been seeing tons of yellow jackets all in the garden, especially on the purple hull peas. I was on the tractor yesterday making a spot for a chicken coop and all. Took down a few trees etc, found a big nest of them in the ground, was going to kill them tonight with gas but from what I was reading they are eating the aphids in my garden so I will leave them and move the chicken pen location.
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Massey Ferguson 231, Nolt's RB-448 Mulch Layer, Countyline Tiller 6', Leinbach 60" Bedder, Earthway Seeder, Hatfield Transplanter, Countyline Middlebuster, Countyline Subsoiler, Countyline Cultivator, Rhino 60

Willis, Tx
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« Reply #3 on: October 15, 2010, 05:39:02 PM »

LOL,  Crazy,  You are now a true believer.  it is called "wanting to eat"!!  I use chemicals but as liitle as I can get by with.  Squash bugs just need Ortho!!

Gail
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davidjrtx
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« Reply #4 on: October 15, 2010, 05:51:02 PM »

I will go get some ortho tomorrow morning, this has got to stop. They have wiped out a lot of plants...
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Massey Ferguson 231, Nolt's RB-448 Mulch Layer, Countyline Tiller 6', Leinbach 60" Bedder, Earthway Seeder, Hatfield Transplanter, Countyline Middlebuster, Countyline Subsoiler, Countyline Cultivator, Rhino 60

Willis, Tx
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« Reply #5 on: October 15, 2010, 06:15:13 PM »

Yep.  I love organics, and I wished they worked all the time, but when you are fighthing squash bugs, and grasshoppers, there is just no help except chemicals.  I lost almost the whole spring/summer garden cause I wouldn't use the chemicals.  I want to eat!!!  The down side is, just as I got through spraying ortho today to get them grasshoppers, I saw two or three praying mantis!  Dang if I didn't kill one for sure with the spray!  They are good aphid eaters.  I also waited until late afternoon/early evening to spray, cause in the mornings I have someons honeybees working very hard pollinating my squash and beans.  I sure hope the ortho doesn't hurt them.

But if you don't get them squash bugs killed, they will wipe out everything.

Crazy
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« Reply #6 on: October 15, 2010, 06:29:54 PM »

Crazy,  i try to use a tiny amount at the very first outbreak of bad guys.  it is a lot easier to kill a few than trying to kill all of the  great great grand kid bugs.  It seems i can hen go a long time before having to doctor something again.

bummer abt the praying mantis.  John rescued a big one out of the chicken yardlast weekend.  He has a new life on the big pine near by.


We can only do what we can do.  i don;t want chickens loaded with steroids though i take a grunch of them myself Tongue  So i grow my own.

I try to keep my poisons to a minimum but I want to eat,too, so i do use them.

Gail
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davidjrtx
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« Reply #7 on: October 15, 2010, 06:54:14 PM »

Grasshoppers are bad to, I have seen babies to. Guess its time to break out the big sprayer an the golf cart and coat everything. My dad has the big tank like Donald has on his golf cart, will have to go borrow it tomorrow...
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Massey Ferguson 231, Nolt's RB-448 Mulch Layer, Countyline Tiller 6', Leinbach 60" Bedder, Earthway Seeder, Hatfield Transplanter, Countyline Middlebuster, Countyline Subsoiler, Countyline Cultivator, Rhino 60

Willis, Tx
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« Reply #8 on: October 15, 2010, 08:22:15 PM »

Well these grasshoppers have been mulitplying for years.  I have been trying to keep the dirt tilled up between the rows to keep the eggs out, but I am seeing all sizes.  And it would help greatly if the pasture around the edge of my garden area was mowed, but that isn't going to happen.  So I spray when I have too.  I hope you get them squash bugs for sure. 

Crazy
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davidjrtx
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« Reply #9 on: October 15, 2010, 08:47:39 PM »

They eat up my pumpkins also, what the vine borers left alive which was very little. Now that I have tilled that and planted winter stuff the bugs just moved over to my squash, what was left of it that the vine borers didnt get.  Angry  These bugs are bad news. Krogers is looking better and better ever time I go there...  Grin
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Massey Ferguson 231, Nolt's RB-448 Mulch Layer, Countyline Tiller 6', Leinbach 60" Bedder, Earthway Seeder, Hatfield Transplanter, Countyline Middlebuster, Countyline Subsoiler, Countyline Cultivator, Rhino 60

Willis, Tx
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« Reply #10 on: October 15, 2010, 09:42:17 PM »

LOL,  Crazy,  You are now a true believer.  it is called "wanting to eat"!!  I use chemicals but as liitle as I can get by with.  Squash bugs just need Ortho!!

Gail

  I dispatched a few hundred thousand to hell with Neem oil.  They were 10-7 in just a few minutes.   Grin
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crazygardener
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« Reply #11 on: October 15, 2010, 09:55:13 PM »

I think organics can work, but it takes years and years, and the organic things are very expensive in my opinion.  It is very sad.  But I finally had to change my mind, and use some chemicals, or I wasn't going to get anything.  It's just frustrating that in order to kill the bad ones, you end up killing the good ones too.  But I will put as much organic mulch, composted poop, and stuff like that to improve the soil for better plants.  I truly believe the healthier the plants, the less devestating the bugs are.  I keep thinking I will try Donald's method of compost tea, using the air stones.  I just haven't been able to get it set up yet.  But I think that's a winner.

Crazy
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tuttimato
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« Reply #12 on: October 15, 2010, 11:13:49 PM »

Around here it seems that every year brings different pests.  Last year there were few stink bugs and horn worms.  This year was legions of stink bugs and few horn worms.  Last year it was millions of those orange things with the black legs and no telling how many different kinds of caterpillars.  This year no orange and black things and (knock wood) not many caterpillars either.  A few weeks ago, huge grasshoppers appeared.  They only hung around for about a week and now I see a few tiny ones.  The only constant is the squash vine borers.  I usually have squash planted until frost but this time I just didn't feel like fighting them.  Maybe next year I'll catch a break because I starved them out.  I can hope.
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« Reply #13 on: October 16, 2010, 06:49:00 AM »

davidjrtx,

I know how you feel. It happened to me last year in my first ever fall planting.

I was going to give it another shot this year and spray just short of having a crop duster come over on a regular basis, but timing and the dry weather saved me the trouble. How does that go? There's always next year. Wouldn't it be great if they ate and killed the weeds and junk that grow in the garden and leave the crop alone? I guess that would be a dream world.

Some of ya'll mentioned stink bugs. there as common around here as mosquitoes and roaches. I bet they have survived almost as long as they say a roach has. I've just learned to live with them. If I see one I kill it other than that, oh well.

About 10 years ago I had a real problem with them in my blueberries. They will come along chew a spot on the skin and move on and chew another berry. They don't totally ruin the berry it just scars the berry making it useless for a fresh or frozen berry.

I studied all the chemicals available to fight stink bugs. It was getting close to harvest and I wanted something with a short preharvest interval. I locked in on 80% Sevin. It was supposed to kill stink bugs on many crops. At that time it wasn't labeled specifically for stink bugs in blueberries, but many other pest in blueberries.

The guy at the ag chemical place where I got all my pesticides and herbicides asked me what my target pest was. I told him stink bugs. He immediately told me it wasn't labeled for stink bugs. I told him look I'm spraying fo all the other things on blueberries that its labeled for and if a stink bug gets in the way, oh well. I told him if it would kill a stink bug on corn it ought to kill one on blueberries because to my knowledge their chewing on blueberries didn't give them immunity to Sevin. That ended that discussion.

On spray day I mixed up my Sevin several times and spent about a half a day srpaying. When I got through I got to thinking and it hit me. You idiot, the woods around us are full of stink bugs. All you have done is wasted time and money to clear the way for the ones in the woods to come in and claim the now stink bug free blueberry field. If I recall, it was so close to harvest that I couldn't legally spray any more than that one time, because once the harvest starts it a daily thing till they are gone.

So, from that point on I just learned to live with stink bugs.

Those squash bugs wiped me out about halfway through the summer. I did get a little stuff off of each planting (4 types) before they got it. I'm beginning to wonder if the squash bug is going to be like the stink bug. Just learn to live with them. Get what you can, if it makes, and let them have the rest. I did spray, but I can't remember why it did no good. I think it was excess rain due to a couple of tropical storms. They brought us excess rain and kept washing it off or preventing me from spraying.

Maybe, probably not in our lifetime, scientist can come up with a bug that will attack and kill not only squash bugs, but all the garden pest. There I am in that dream world again.
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davidjrtx
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« Reply #14 on: October 16, 2010, 08:26:44 AM »

Went out and looked this morning, didnt really see any squash bugs, saw cucumber beetles though, a few stink bugs on the tomatoes as usual, squished the ones that let me grab them. It was cool though, I am going to investigate farther today. I did notice powdery mildew stuff on some of the older squash plants, guess I will spray those with fungicide here in a bit.

I am in the process of building or making an attempt at building a place for chickens, it is my intention to let them out in the garden ever now and then to get bugs if they dont eat my vegetables. May have to get some guineas, I read that they dont tear up the garden as bad as chickens. I am going to get some arcanaes that lay the colored eggs, I used to have some years ago that laid the blue, green, olive colored eggs.
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Massey Ferguson 231, Nolt's RB-448 Mulch Layer, Countyline Tiller 6', Leinbach 60" Bedder, Earthway Seeder, Hatfield Transplanter, Countyline Middlebuster, Countyline Subsoiler, Countyline Cultivator, Rhino 60

Willis, Tx
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« Reply #15 on: October 16, 2010, 10:47:19 AM »

The cucumber beetles will wipe out your squash just as bad as the squash bugs.  My first crop of zucinni which was in my spring/summer garden was just about wiped out from cucumber beetles.  They ruin corn too.  I saved my zucinni by spraying with Bt (which is not labeled for the beetles) and using some DE to dust the plants with.  They started growing and coming along fine, then got hit by squash bugs.  And as they say the rest is history, and so were the zucinni.

Crazy
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davidjrtx
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« Reply #16 on: October 16, 2010, 04:07:05 PM »

I love ortho max, bought 2 quarts of concentrate, used about 1/2 or a little more of one. Used to when I walked through the garden there would be bugs going everywhere, not anymore...
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Massey Ferguson 231, Nolt's RB-448 Mulch Layer, Countyline Tiller 6', Leinbach 60" Bedder, Earthway Seeder, Hatfield Transplanter, Countyline Middlebuster, Countyline Subsoiler, Countyline Cultivator, Rhino 60

Willis, Tx
chuckga
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« Reply #17 on: October 16, 2010, 04:28:27 PM »

David,

Ortho Max or Bayer Advanced will do the trick everytime... lots of folks have to discover for themselves that there is simply not an effective organic solution to bug control. Wish there was but bottom line is that there is not.
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davidjrtx
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« Reply #18 on: October 16, 2010, 04:32:17 PM »

David,

Ortho Max or Bayer Advanced will do the trick everytime... lots of folks have to discover for themselves that there is simply not an effective organic solution to bug control. Wish there was but bottom line is that there is not.

I have never used anything but spinosad on the pumpkins and corn, didnt work. I got something for the corn borers and vine borers next year.. *thumbs up*
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Massey Ferguson 231, Nolt's RB-448 Mulch Layer, Countyline Tiller 6', Leinbach 60" Bedder, Earthway Seeder, Hatfield Transplanter, Countyline Middlebuster, Countyline Subsoiler, Countyline Cultivator, Rhino 60

Willis, Tx
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