protecting vegetables - Knowledgebase Question

New Hyde Park, Ne
Question by ECCurtistv
July 15, 2010
Some thing is eating my green peppers. Would also like to protect my other vegetables


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Answer from NGA
July 15, 2010

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It's always best to identify the pest before trying to control it. There's a possibility that the insect pest has done its damage and has already left your garden so spraying with insecticides won't be necessary. The other concern is that not all pesticides work on all types of insects and not all pesticides are safe to use on vegetables. Plus, when you spray an insecticide, you will also be killing off the beneficial insects in your garden. Without beneficials, the flowers may not be pollinated which means less fruit on the peppers and tomatoes and other flowering vegetable plants. Try finding out what's feeding on your plants and handpicking pests when you find them. Sprays should be a last resort. Caterpillars can be controlled with Bt (bacillus thuringensis) which is sold as Thuricide or Dipel; soft bodied insects such as aphids can be controlled with Insecticidal Soap. There are neem oil based products, pyrethrums and rotenone that can be safely used against beetles in a vegetable garden. Be sure to read and apply according to label directions. Good luck with your garden.

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