Ask a Question forum: Squash plant leaves are being eaten, leaving a skeleton of the leaf.

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Name: Debbi Stauffer
Tampa, Florida
deby2112
Jun 30, 2016 6:23 PM CST
The leaves of the plant are being eaten leaving either no leaf at all or just a skeleton of the leaf.
There is a lot what looks like dirt on the leaves. I don't think they are squash bugs. It looks like dirt. What are they and how do I kill them.
Name: Daisy
Reno, Nv (Zone 6b)
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DaisyI
Jun 30, 2016 6:37 PM CST
Photo please.....
Name: Elaine
South Sarasota, Florida (Zone 9b)
The one constant in life is change
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dyzzypyxxy
Jul 1, 2016 11:24 AM CST
Pickleworms do that, Debbi. Sorry to say it's really hard to grow anything related to squash, melons or cucumbers down here in FL because we have not only pickleworms but stem boring caterpillars as well. I've given up trying to grow them except maybe early in the spring before the pests are quite so active.

You can try spraying with Bt (get it as a concentrate at any garden store) and it is rated for use on organic edibles. But it may be too late.
Elaine

"Success is stumbling from failure to failure with no loss of enthusiasm." –Winston Churchill
Name: Debbi Stauffer
Tampa, Florida
deby2112
Jul 1, 2016 5:44 PM CST
Thank you dyzzpyxxy. This is the third time I have tried to grow squash this year. The first and second time everything looked really good, then the vines were eaten. The third time I tried I wrapped the stems with panty hose and aluminum foil. ( I read that on line somewhere). The stems are great but now I have no leaves or just skeletons. I give up.

I will try again in the spring and maybe get some Bt.
Name: Elaine
South Sarasota, Florida (Zone 9b)
The one constant in life is change
Cat Lover Master Gardener: Florida Tropicals Multi-Region Gardener Vegetable Grower Region: Florida
Herbs Orchids Birds Garden Ideas: Level 2 Garden Sages Celebrating Gardening: 2015
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dyzzypyxxy
Jul 1, 2016 6:04 PM CST
Hey, the panty hose/foil idea sounds like a good one! Yes, try planting them in February when the danger of cold weather is just barely past. There are far less bugs around at that time of year.
Elaine

"Success is stumbling from failure to failure with no loss of enthusiasm." –Winston Churchill
Name: Debbi Stauffer
Tampa, Florida
deby2112
Jul 1, 2016 6:17 PM CST
Thanks! I will try that.
Thank You!

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