Today I’m talking with Steve Falcioni about organic controls for when your plants are infested with aphids, those dreadful little sap suckers, and a common pest on many plants in the early spring.
Aphids appear in a variety of colours and are prolific reproducers, giving birth to live young and quickly growing through four stages, getting bigger as they feed. They can severely damage young and tender new growth and cause new leaves to be distorted. Early spring into summer is the peak time for aphid damage. As aphid populations run out of room on the stem, the usually wingless aphids will develop wings and transfer themselves to nearby growth.
Aphids Part 1: Steve describes how aphids damage new growth and also the beneficial insects that can help save your plants. These prey on aphids as they cluster on new stems and Steve describes how to identify each of these beneficial insects and how they can help you control a rapidly building population of aphids.
Aphids Part 2: Steve explains how beneficial insects ‘know’ where the aphids are, and also how to manage aphids where your plants are being badly damaged and you can’t wait for the beneficial insects to arrive, like on vegie crops. Even organic sprays can harm populations of beneficial insects and Steve explains the differences between horticultural oil and pest oil and which you should choose, and offers more information about using neem oil as well.