Garden Pest

The pictures in the previous post are of garden pest.  In an attempt to get ahead of a huge infestation and loss of my crops I'd posted these to get some advice.  Krista of Forrest Green Farm offered this advice by phone:

The yellow eggs could be ladybugs, but orange eggs are usually potato bugs.

The the tomato problem - blossom end rot - needs calcium.  For immediate intake she suggest eggshells soaked in water and poured at the base of each plant. 

The yellowing leaves - definitely a soil problem - water fruiting plants with a mix of 2 TBS Epsom salt: 1 gallon of water once followed by weekly doses of 1/2 strength fish emulsion.

Moles/voles - chewed juicy fruit gum in their holes will be ingested and kill them. I know it sounds cruel but a gardener can't be friends with a critter that eats roots.  I've also used repellent with success. 

Flea Beetles - on eggplant, cabbage, arugula - no organic solution that works permanently, its best to plant these in cool seasons and eggplant will have to have a complete cover to survive.

Aphids - buy aphid eating ladybugs (not to be confused with the imported ones in our houses who don't eat aphids), or try organic insecticidal soap

Grasshoppers - dust with flour- they ingest it and die - but you have to wash it off during the day so they can photosynthesize. 

Squash bugs - a real pest, so you have to be diligent - remove mulch, lay down boards to trap them at night pick and destroy them in the morning. Watch for reddish eggs under the leaves and destroy them.

I refuse to loose to squash bugs this year, so when I found them in my mulch, I gathered it up and piled it outside of my planting beds and dusted it with Sevens (a non-organic bug killer) so call this "semi organic."
Japanese beetles are attacking string beans, kiwi, passionflower, ornamental and fruit trees so I'm spraying with neem and pyrethrins as well as manually knocking them off into a bucket of soapy water.  
This week I spotted a tomato horn worm (a fat camouflaged green thumb sized caterpillars with a horn) eating my tomato leaves.  You can find him by looking for bare stems whose leaves are completely chewed away, and by looking for the droppings on the leaves. 
So far pest are under control. I'll post pictures of this year's garden soon.

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This website keeps alive the memory and vision of our parents Mary Kathryn Gaines and James L. Smith, cofounders of "The Inspiration" a print newsletter from the days before the internet. They were lifelong learners and generous teachers who always had a tip, a how-to, an-easier-way nugget to share; always practical, wildly creative, and life inspiring. This collection of tips, treasures, wisdom, whit, practical information and inspiration is written to continue that legacy.

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