Friday, April 30, 2010

Spring Weather Means Attack of the Aphids!

Aphids are small, soft-bodied winged or wingless insects about 1/25 to 1/8 inches in length, with relatively long legs and antennae. Aphids can vary in color from black, green, yellow to even pink. Some aphids lay eggs, while others give birth to live young that can mature in as little as 7 to 8 days. Aphids have piercing-sucking mouthparts that remove phloem from the plant, which can cause distortions in young leaves and stunt new growth. They can also feed on flower buds, which cause deformities.
Since aphids feed on phloem they excrete honeydew, which is a sticky waste product that collects onto lower lying leaves. Once deposited, the honeydew is a nice food source for sooty mold which may grow on the underlying foliage. Sooty mold will inhibit photosynthesis, so its growth can potentially cause severe harm to the plants.

Some Control Options

Some Non-Chemical Control Options: Conserve beneficial insects, such as spiders, praying mantids, assassin bugs, lacewings, ladybird beetle larvae and adults and parasitic wasps in outdoor landscapes. Also spraying water streams is effective to dislodge aphids feeding on plants.

Some Chemical Control Options: Insecticidal soaps and oils can be used to control aphids and are considered low impact insecticides. Other foliar insecticides containing such active ingredients as permethrin, cyfluthrin, carbaryl, deltamethrin, pyrethrins and tebufenozide or systemic insecticides such as those containing imidacloprid or acephate can also be used.

Yellow sugarcane aphid, Sipha flava (Forbes) (Homoptera: Aphididae). Photo by Bart Drees, Professor and Extension Entomologist, Texas A&M University.

3 comments:

佩慧娟樺 said...

生命是一頓豐富的宴席,有人卻寧可挨餓 ..................................................

峻帆 said...

人有兩眼一舌,是為了觀察倍於說話的緣故。...............................................................

Screwed Up Texan said...

I usually never treat the aphids unless they become a serious issue. Right now, I have an abundance of ladybugs and their larvae in my garden. Gardeners should become familiar with what ladybug larvae look like. A ladybug from larvae to adult stages can consume 500 to 700 aphids in it's life cycle. In smaller gardens it may be possible to handpick or rub out the aphids. If the aphids become a bigger problem, only then will I treat with insecticides.