Every day customers visit us with plant problems that range from powdery mildew to Japanese beetle infestations. Here’s a look at some of the issues our Garden Pharmacy experts are seeing this summer.
“Fortunately, we’ve been mercifully free of any single widespread pest in the area the last few years,” says Greg Pizzino, Garden Pharmacy Expert at English Gardens Ann Arbor. The pests, found in gardens this summer, are still common problems but not excessively problematic.
Problem:Aphids are one of the most basic pests in your garden. They reproduce at a very fast rate. A small infestation of aphids can turn horrendous in a matter of days. Aphids cause leaf curling and yellowing, or in extreme cases can kill off any new growth.
Solution:Treatable with basic pest controls, or even organics such as pyrethrins, aphids need to be treated for on a regular basis. Rather than every few weeks applying treatment, use these products every few days to stop their breeding cycle.
Problem: Japanese beetle season has arrived. They eat flowers and skeletonize leaves of numerous plant species.
Solution: Placing a beetle trap, at the opposite end of your yard will prevent pests from getting to your plants. If you have already found beetles on your plants, use Bonide Japanese Beetle Spray or Espoma Insect Control to take care of the problem immediately.
Problem: Spider mites, common in hot, dry weather, enjoy evergreens such as Arborvitae and Alberta Spruce.
Solution: Similar to aphids, spider mites require regular treatment. Apply a miticide, such as the organic Espoma 3 in 1 Disease Control or Bayer 3 in 1 Insect, Disease and Mite.
Problem: One of the most devastating pests in the garden, slugs can cause serious damage. Given a high moisture environment, a family of slugs can devastate an entire vegetable garden.
Solution: Monterey Sluggo Snail and Slug Control is organic and safe for pets and wildlife. It can also be used in vegetable gardens.
Problem: Mosquitoes can suck the fun out of any party! Mosquitoes are attracted to any standing water that may be present in your backyard.
Solution: Mosquito Barrier is a natural, garlic-based insect repellant safe for children, pets, birds, bees and butterflies! Plants absorb it to repel mosquitoes for up to a month. Another option is the Bonide Mosquito Barrier, which is non-toxic, biodegradable, and pleasantly scented.
Problem: Although ticks are not harmful to plants, they can be harmful to you, your family and pets!
Solution: Mosquito Barrier is an effective tick control, as well. If you find a tick on you or your family, utilize the Cutter Lyme Disease Tick Test to test the tick and determine if it carries Lyme disease. The Tick Test is found at English Gardens six main stores.
Regardless of the pest type, you can minimize the use of pesticides by checking plants regularly. By doing so, pest problems can be prevented in their earlier stages. Walk through your garden several times a week to examine plants and look for any problems.
”Now that we’ve entered the warm season, many diseases such as black spot and powdery mildew will start to die down. Problems, like late blight and rust, will become more prevalent,” explains Greg Pizzino.
Problem: Late blight, common in tomatoes, is caused by a fungus that also affects potatoes.
Solution: Late blight can be taken care of with natural products, such as copper fungicide, or the bacterial Serenade.
Problem: Plant rust is a fungal disease that thrives on mild, moist conditions. The first sign of rust are specks or tiny spots that range in color from orange to brown. Often, rust is not fatal but can cause a decline in health of your plants.
Solution: Rust can also be treated with a copper fungicide.
There are three essential steps we encourage consumers to take before the application of pesticides and other products:
- Proper Diagnosis: The first step in treating a pest or insect problem is always proper diagnosis. If you see a problem in your garden, bring a sample of the affected area in your local English Gardens and our Garden Pharmacy experts will diagnose the problem.
- Proper Solution: After the Garden Pharmacy Experts have diagnosed the problem, they will offer a custom “Plantscription” for the treatment and solution.
- Proper Use: Utilize the label instructions to determine the proper timing, amount and application technique for the application of pesticides. We always encourage spot treatment rather than applying to your entire yard.