The Q&A Archives: bugs eating summer squash,cucumbers & peppers

Question: I have a bug that is the size of a ladybug it is yellow gold with 2 black stripes down its back & they fly. They are eating my yellow squash, cucumbers, zucchini & peppers. I found them inside of the flowers on the squash & zucchini. I tried a little soap and water in a spray bottle but it didn't work. I don't want to put to much on the plants as we eat them what to do HELP!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Answer: What you describe sounds like cucumber beetles. Unfortunately, once they are in the area, they are hard to get rid of. You can handpick them or try using row covers to keep them off the plants. Another trick is to wait to plant cucumbers until mid-summer and then plant a bush-type that will mature quickly. Radishes are reported to be a repellant as are nasturtiums. You might also try spraying with a neem-based repellent ("neem" is an extract of the neem tree seed) according to the label directions. Good luck!

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