Tropicals forum: Zika and bromeliads

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Name: Karen
NM , AZ (Zone 7b)
Region: New Mexico Region: Arizona Greenhouse Cactus and Succulents Adeniums Garden Art
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plantmanager
Sep 2, 2016 11:57 AM CST
I just wondered if any of you Floridians are being told to rip out your bromeliads? Florida would sad looking without them. Would it be possible to put the mosquito killing cakes inside their vases? I just saw this article:
http://www.nbcnews.com/storyline/zika-virus-outbreak/zika-mo...
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Name: Lin
Florida (Zone 9b)
Region: United States of America Morning Glories Region: Florida Houseplants Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
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plantladylin
Sep 2, 2016 12:29 PM CST
Gee, I hadn't heard about that but after reading the article at your link, I see it was reported here too:
http://abcnews.go.com/Health/wireStory/florida-finds-zika-tr...
and your post got me to do more searching.

I'd sure hate to have to rip out all the bromeliads growing beneath the oak trees in my yard. Crying We've had a lot of rain here the past two days but I doubt the mosquito dunks would work for massive plantings of broms; I might have to spray mine after the rains stop.

I found this article about controlling mosquitoes in Bromeliads: http://www.tampabay.com/features/homeandgarden/simple-precau...
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Name: Karen
NM , AZ (Zone 7b)
Region: New Mexico Region: Arizona Greenhouse Cactus and Succulents Adeniums Garden Art
Plumerias Hibiscus Houseplants Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Dog Lover Cat Lover
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plantmanager
Sep 2, 2016 12:35 PM CST
I sure hope people don't have to tear out their plants. That was a good article, and I'm happy there are ways to treat them so the they don't become mosquito nurseries. Thanks for your reply and links.
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Name: Lin
Florida (Zone 9b)
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plantladylin
Sep 2, 2016 12:38 PM CST
Thank you for posting the link to the NBC news article!
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Name: Scott
Tampa FL
Tropicals Region: Florida Enjoys or suffers hot summers Bromeliad Plumerias Dog Lover
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ScotTi
Sep 2, 2016 12:56 PM CST
I have used a little cold black coffee or a pinch of used coffee grounds in the bromeliad cups for years to control mosquitos from breeding in my bromelaids.
Name: Alice
Saint Helena Island, SC (Zone 9a)
Charter ATP Member Hummingbirder Garden Photography Container Gardener Butterflies Bromeliad
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ardesia
Sep 2, 2016 1:11 PM CST
The same people who make mosquito dunks make mosquito bits. I think they are essentially ground up dunks but I am not positive. They are designed for plants like broms which hold water. I just sprinkle a few bits in every few weeks or more often if we have lots of rain.
Minds are like parachutes; they work better when they are open.
Name: Karen
NM , AZ (Zone 7b)
Region: New Mexico Region: Arizona Greenhouse Cactus and Succulents Adeniums Garden Art
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plantmanager
Sep 2, 2016 1:12 PM CST
Good idea, Scott. I really hate mosquitoes and try to do whatever I can to eliminate them. We are having a big mosquito problem this summer in Arizona. It's normally rare to have them be bad here, but we've had just enough rains to keep them going.
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Name: Karen
NM , AZ (Zone 7b)
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plantmanager
Sep 2, 2016 1:17 PM CST
I didn't know that, Alice. I'll look for those.
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Name: Hetty
Sunny Naples, Florida (Zone 10a)
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Dutchlady1
Sep 2, 2016 1:41 PM CST
Thanks for the great info, ScotTi and Ardesia. We don't need any knee-jerk reactions like ripping out every bromeliad in the country.... Blinking
Name: Karen
NM , AZ (Zone 7b)
Region: New Mexico Region: Arizona Greenhouse Cactus and Succulents Adeniums Garden Art
Plumerias Hibiscus Houseplants Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Dog Lover Cat Lover
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plantmanager
Sep 2, 2016 1:44 PM CST
Dutchlady1 said:Thanks for the great info, ScotTi and Ardesia. We don't need any knee-jerk reactions like ripping out every bromeliad in the country.... Blinking


I agree

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Name: Lin
Florida (Zone 9b)
Region: United States of America Morning Glories Region: Florida Houseplants Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
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plantladylin
Sep 2, 2016 2:03 PM CST
ScotTi said: I have used a little cold black coffee or a pinch of used coffee grounds in the bromeliad cups for years to control mosquitos from breeding in my bromelaids.

Oh my goodness, this is great news! I had no idea coffee was a mosquito repellent and I think, from now on I will brew a pot of coffee for me and one for the broms (cooled of course!)

~ Eat, Sleep .... Play in the dirt ~
Name: Karen
NM , AZ (Zone 7b)
Region: New Mexico Region: Arizona Greenhouse Cactus and Succulents Adeniums Garden Art
Plumerias Hibiscus Houseplants Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Dog Lover Cat Lover
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plantmanager
Sep 2, 2016 2:05 PM CST
Thumbs up
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Name: Jean
Hot Springs Vlg, AR, DeLand, F
Region: Florida Daylilies Garden Ideas: Master Level Celebrating Gardening: 2015
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rocklady
Sep 2, 2016 2:12 PM CST
That's a good tip, Scott. Thank You!
Any day you wake up on the sunny side of the grass is a good day.

"The moving hand writes and having writ moves on. Neither all thy piety nor all thy wit can lure it back to cancel half a line nor all thy tears wash out a word of it." The Rubiyat by Omar Khayyam
Name: Bob
Clayton, NC (Zone 7b)
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DigginDirt
Sep 2, 2016 2:38 PM CST
Before anyone considers deforesting their gardens I think we should step back and think. Even if EVERY gardener removed their beautiful flowers, who's going to tell the mosquitoes not to use ponds, swamps, and other bodies of water for breeding? Personally I don't want to be the one tasked with draining the swamps while the gators are picnicking.

I realize news reporters want people to be aware of the desease, and I know I don't want mosquito bites - with or without diseases involved - but there has to be some common sense applied. Removing bromelaids in the gardens is NOT going to remove natural places in trees, the "wild" bromelaids high in trees, and other plants that can hold water, and other standing water. Mosquitoes will simply find other places to lay their eggs and the issue of Zika or other diseases will not have been "fixed" in the least.
I wish reporters and their affiliates would stop and think things through before getting people all worked up. Yes, Zika is a potentially dangerous threat, as was yellow fever, malaria, and other diseases in our nation's past; but removing plants is not even a good band-aid for the problem; ripping out plants will not fix anything.

All that said, I am all for anything that keeps those little pests from biting! Thanks for the ideas with coffee... I hope to add it to my arsenal of herbs (especially ones that smell like lemon) to keep them at bay. We can not stop mosquitoes everywhere. Yes, controlling them in our gardens may be doable for our personal sanity, but the silliness of removing plants is just that - silliness.
Name: Karen
NM , AZ (Zone 7b)
Region: New Mexico Region: Arizona Greenhouse Cactus and Succulents Adeniums Garden Art
Plumerias Hibiscus Houseplants Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Dog Lover Cat Lover
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plantmanager
Sep 2, 2016 3:58 PM CST
I sure agree with all that, Bob! I hope they don't try to take such ridiculous measures.
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Name: Lin
Florida (Zone 9b)
Region: United States of America Morning Glories Region: Florida Houseplants Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
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plantladylin
Sep 2, 2016 4:11 PM CST
LOL, If I were told that I had to remove all of the broms from my yard I'd have to protest ... very loudly! It sure surprised me to read that the city of Miami Beach is removing all bromeliads from their landscaping; maybe the fear of the possible loss of tourist dollars is scaring the powers that be in that city.
~ Eat, Sleep .... Play in the dirt ~
Name: Karen
NM , AZ (Zone 7b)
Region: New Mexico Region: Arizona Greenhouse Cactus and Succulents Adeniums Garden Art
Plumerias Hibiscus Houseplants Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Dog Lover Cat Lover
Image
plantmanager
Sep 2, 2016 4:13 PM CST
Rolling on the floor laughing That's entirely possible, Lin!
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Name: Bob
Clayton, NC (Zone 7b)
Ferns Dog Lover Cat Lover Region: North Carolina Garden Ideas: Level 1 Hummingbirder
Dragonflies Ponds
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DigginDirt
Sep 2, 2016 5:40 PM CST
I know this is not the place for my commentary, but I certainly don't want to see someone follow the media's poorly thought out comments and think removing plants will prevent Zika or another disease. I'm not a fatalist, it's just simply common sense that if there is no water in a Bromelaid that the mosquito will find it elsewhere. I also do not believe if a mosquito lays her eggs in someone's Bromelaid that it would somehow be their fault; she's gonna do what instinct dictates, so WHERE is not the problem. If society is seriously going to deal with it, removing plants is not the solution.

I'm done. Anyone want a soapbox to make a planter with? Whistling
Pennsylvania (Zone 6b)
Garden Ideas: Level 1
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Cinta
Sep 3, 2016 11:25 PM CST
I think the spray they are using all over the city is going be more of a health risk than the mosquito. Ten years from now they will find out that people will have some aliment from the poison they are spreading like the agent orange debacle.
Name: Alice
Saint Helena Island, SC (Zone 9a)
Charter ATP Member Hummingbirder Garden Photography Container Gardener Butterflies Bromeliad
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ardesia
Sep 4, 2016 7:25 AM CST
I sort of half agree with you Cinta but I have worked with children with microcephalus and it is beyond heartbreaking.
Minds are like parachutes; they work better when they are open.

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