Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Fornicating Anasa tristis

Or in other - and much more offensive words...

....fucking squash bugs.  

My gardens have been plagued with this kind of squash bug for years:

But now it seems as if the word has gone around the block that Krazo Acres is the perfect spot to grab a bite to eat, have sex and raise a family in my squash garden.

So now I have the dreaded Squash Vine Borer, and not one, but two Cucumber Beetles, which I just recently identified.  And the worst thing about identifying the SVB is that I've seen the adults around the yard the past month and though, "Oh, I shouldn't kill those, they look kind'a pretty and they might be a good bug", not knowing that I should have been stomping the crap out of them each and every time I saw one.  
Squash Vine Borers doing the nasty.
Apparently the Cucumber Beetles haven't found my cucumbers yet
as they are currently eating holes in the leaves of my squash plants.
I've been going over each and every squash plant in the garden and every day I find more adults.  I usually squash one or two bugs in each squash hill but haven't seen any adolescents and only two clusters of eggs so far.  I have twenty-four mounds of zucchini, yellow, acorn and butternut squash out there and the heck if I am going to let these bastards destroy my Spring and Fall harvests.  

At this point I hope I'll be able to keep them in check, but if they get too bad I am going to have to resort to some sort of pesticide, be it organic-lovey-dovey stuff or Agent Orange.  

There's a break in the rain right now (we've had rain for the last week!  whoo hoo!) so I'm off to crush the exoskeletons of some more Cucurbita-eating bastard insects.


  1. Pesticides don't really work on adult squash bugs. They work on the little gray youngins though.

    I have never found a way to fight them only try and keep the growth to a minimum and delay the inevitable.

  2. Carolyn,

    Rotten bastards!!! They do know when to mess with us don't they? Always when were waiting for our veggies to get big enough to harvest. To bad we can't just zap them all dead at once without hurting our vegetables.

  3. I have yet to find anything that works with squash bugs, after trying the marigolds, lemon balm, sweet potatoes, hand-picking, spraying pepper and soap stuff, etc, etc.

    The one thing that does work for me is row cover. I just bend wire into hoops, lay it over, and clothespin it down. Then, when the plants are bursting out and flowering, I pull it off. By then, the plants have a very good head start, and the bugs haven't multiplied to horrible levels yet.

    I've been doing that for a few years now, and it lets me get a decent harvest until the plants finally do die. Since I can reuse the cover for a few years, it's pretty cheap, and sure beats hand-picking the nasty things.

  4. The only thing I can do take the duct tape to them every couple of days. I stirred up the dirt early in the season and the adults came up so I got some of them right away. then I killed a couple of mating pairs, which drastically diminished the eggs. I also turn over the leaves and use the tape on the eggs. Good luck.

  5. I planted a flower around my squash, and I have not seen more than one squash bug this year. Of course, this year we are under water so I'm not getting more than a two or three squash, but my plants are still there. The flower is called Nasturtium.

  6. I hate those rat bastards with a passion. I've had horrible times with them every since we moved out here. Like Ron, I've tried just about everything. I'd try the row covers but the funds aren't exactly available just now.
    I did try a new product this year that they say is safe in gardens. It's called Eight. I sprinkled it around the stems of what was left of my squash and then picked off all the bugs, and scrapped off all the eggs I could find. You don't want to get it on your buds though. It's bad for the bees and butterflies. I actually saw some improvement (no rat bastards) for a few days... then... yep... the squash vine borer showed up. *sigh* They didn't seem to be affected at all with the product.
    I did hear something interesting on a natural gardening show a couple of weeks ago. A guy called in and said he had used BT (mixed at regular strength) and took a syringe and inoculated his squash stems. He said it worked. But until I actually see it myself I'm not going to get excited. Arggggg.... I miss my squash.

  7. I have never seen the adult squash vine bore, just the worm inside the vine. I will keep an eye out for them.