grasshopper invasion - Knowledgebase Question

corning, Ca
Question by susanstillw
January 20, 2011
for the last two years I have had an infestation (millions) of grasshoppers at my home. I live on 40 acers. From what I have read this can continue for years because they lay eggs in the soil each year. It is so dishartning to have all of my flowers and trees chewed up. Please give me some advise. Even when I call an exterminator he said he could come and spray but they have wings and more would c


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Answer from NGA
January 20, 2011

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You have my sympathy! Grasshoppers are difficult to deter because they come in from neighboring fields and yards. A biological control disease organism, the protozoan Nosema locustae might work. Nosema locustae is most effective on young grasshoppers. This biological control will reduce grasshopper numbers over a few days or weeks, but, generally, it is a slow-acting disease that takes at least a year to affect grasshopper populations. N. locustae is available at many garden shops and nurseries and is sold under various trade names. Use this product strictly according to label instructions. Because adult grasshoppers are older and tougher than the nymphs, they are more difficult to control. Deter them from your garden by keeping other areas of your property well-watered to provide a lush alternative to your garden. In a vegetable garden, grasshoppers are probably best controlled with rotenone, sabadilla or pyrethrum sprays applied when you first notice the damage. Grasshoppers can also be controlled with biological weapon called Nosema locustae. It should be readily available in your local garden center. Best wishes with your garden!

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