The Q&A Archives: Collards, Cabbage & Bush Beans

Question: After bug spraying my entire garden with Volck Oil Spray, my big leaf vegetables are now turning light green and appear to be dying. Is there anything I can do to help them? They now have developed tiny bugs.

Answer: Oil based sprays can damage the leaves of some plants. The oil can clog the natural openings in the leaves so there is no exchange of carbon dioxide and oxygen, essentially suffocating the leaves. The oil can be phytotoxic on some leaves, causing sunscald. And, in the case of cabbage, the oil can dissolve the protective waxy coating on the leaves. The oil will be difficult to rinse off the leaves so I don't know that you can do anything to lessen the damage. With any luck it will weather away. Whenever you use pesticides in your garden be sure to read the entire label to make sure the targeted pest AND the plant you intend to spray it on are both listed on the label. If not, don't spray the plant. As you have discovered, not all pesticides are safe to use on all plants. As for the tiny bugs, try washing them off with water from the hose. Good luck with your garden!

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