How To Kill Aphids
Among gardeners, aphids are one of the most hated of all insects, so learning how to kill aphids is going to be in order for anyone who wants pest-free plants. Aphids aren’t fussy! They attack all types of plants, from houseplants to outdoor flowers, vegetables and fruits. And, when they arrive they don’t appear one at a time, they swarm full force into the garden and can attack many different kinds of plants at the same time. They also have the ability to damage leaves, causing them to curl up, and then they hide in the curls so you cannot see them.
Thankfully, it is not hard to learn how to kill aphids. These nasty, little creatures actually suck all the moisture out of plants so that the plant will stop growing and just wither away. In outdoor gardens, aphids arrive in the early spring. Check your plants’ leaves, and if you spot some tiny greenish-gray insects, take immediate action to kill them. Aphids can completely destroy a garden in 48 hours.
When you are checking out how to kill aphids, don’t forget that there are many ways to do it organically. One of the most popular is to bring in insects to eat the aphids. You can buy predator insects at many gardening stores, and the best one to feast on your aphids is the ladybug. Buy some ladybugs and release them at the base of the aphid-infested plants, and in no time your aphid problem will be history.
Another organic method of controlling aphids on your plants is to use an insecticidal soap. Gardening stores have a special insecticidal soap that you can dilute with water and spray onto your plants. The best time to do it is in the evening after the heat has cooled down for the day. Some people make their own organic insecticidal soap, but you have to be careful about not using too strong a soap or it can be toxic to the plants.
Homemade soap usually involves mixing together a tablespoon of dishwashing detergent with a quart of warm water and two teaspoons of cayenne pepper. Just pour the liquid into a spray bottle and spray the plant leaves. Remember to do the tops and the underneath part of the leaves because this is where the aphids like to hide.
Unfortunately, if you have a problem with aphids, you either already have a problem with ants or you will shortly. Aphids give off a sweet liquid which attracts ants. An indoor and outdoor remedy for many insects is to dust your plants with diatomaceous earth. This is available at many organic gardening stores. It not only works to rid plants of insects but can also be consumed by dogs, cats, cattle, etc. to get rid of internal parasites, fleas, ticks, and many other insects.
Because diatomaceous earth (crystallized algae) works by mechanical rather than chemical means (it crushes the insect and deprives it of fluid), you can treat vegetable plants right up to the day of harvest with no negative results. In fact, this product has been approved by the FDA for human consumption.
For those of you who don’t mind using man-made chemicals, there are many different kinds of insecticides which can get rid of aphids. Just make sure to check with the seller to get advice about safe usage and follow the instructions exactly as they are on the package.
Aphids can be bad news but once you know how to kill aphids, you won’t have to worry about them destroying your garden or all the hard work you have put into it.