aphids - Knowledgebase Question

Marblehead, Ma (Zone 6b)
I need some help, Please.
Avatar for GardenWalkerJJJ
Question by GardenWalkerJJJ
October 20, 2010

my lupins had a massive aphid problem this year. do they lay eggs and come back next year? If so, when and how should I prepare for them hatching next spring. How do you control aphids once they are found on plants? Thank you very much for your help. Jody Magee

Answer from NGA
October 20, 2010
Aphids are interesting insects in that most are females and they give birth to live young. That's why one or two aphids on your plants can become a whole colony seemingly overnight. Because of the way they reproduce you can have several generations on a single stem in a matter of days. In the fall a few males are born, they mate, and the females lay eggs which can overwinter on plant debris. In the spring when the weather warms, these little pests can hatch and start the whole process all over again. The good news is that ladybug larvae love aphids and tiny little wasps/flies can attack the eggs. If you're patient, a natural balance of ladybugs, tachinid flies and aphids will evolve. If you have no patience, you can hose off any aphids you see with a strong stream of water from the hose, or apply Insecticidal Soap sprays to control the aphids. Start this fall by removing the dead flower stems and foliage and clean the garden of debris so insect eggs won't overwinter.

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