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Author Topic: Organic gardening -- cabbage worms
fs

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Icon 1 posted July 06, 2010 04:03      Profile for fs   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
So my brussel sprouts and cauliflower have holes in their leaves and little worms on the underside. Not a lot, just a couple per leaf, but they seem to make a lot of holes. The CBC suggests a spray of 28 grams of salt in 4.5 liters of water. Anyone else have any other non-toxic suggestions for this particular situation?

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Posts: 1973 | From: The Cat Ship | Registered: Mar 2002  |  IP: Logged
littlefish
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Icon 1 posted July 06, 2010 04:28      Profile for littlefish   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Non-toxic pesticides are not going to kill the pests!
Posts: 2421 | From: That London | Registered: Nov 2001  |  IP: Logged
Ashitaka

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Icon 1 posted July 06, 2010 05:16      Profile for Ashitaka     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Oh o, not anouther pesticide thread.

I think we are operating under differing definitions. Don't think of a substance as toxic. Think of a level of a substance as toxic, in relation to a specific organism.

I haven't ever used pesticides in my garden, I, once a day in the evening, go through and kill/ remove as many pests eating my garden as I can. Mostly snails, they usually eat about half my garden every year.

I also have throughout my garden a plant that seems to attract spiders, ( this plant is always covered with spiders and webs). I don't know if the spiders eat the bugs that eat my plants but spiders do eat alot of bugs. Spiders don't eat slugs, I don't think.

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Posts: 3089 | From: Switzerland | Registered: Feb 2006  |  IP: Logged
fs

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Icon 1 posted July 06, 2010 06:15      Profile for fs   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
I could go out and pick them off, I guess. But I feel bad about killing them after they hatch--they're just little white butterflies in the larval stage. I'm more interested in a solution that will kill the eggs.

Slugs aren't a big problem since it's a 4th floor balcony garden. Just flying things. There was an epidemic of blådlossa (not sure on the spelling, or what they are in English--translates as "leaf lice") this late spring/early summer, but I kept fibercloth over the plants during the worst of it and that stymied them.

I tried the salt water solution. I'll see if it makes an appreciable difference. (Also I moved the cabbageworm plants away from all the others, just so the bugs don't get any relocation ideas.)

I might pick up some dill, too; I read on another site that it repels the cabbage worms in butterfly form.

What's the plant spiders like?

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Posts: 1973 | From: The Cat Ship | Registered: Mar 2002  |  IP: Logged
Ashitaka

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Icon 1 posted July 06, 2010 06:30      Profile for Ashitaka     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
I don't know, I didn't plant it. It is a flower ( yellow) that is basdically ground covering reaching about 5 cm tall but spreading out. It growns under my tomatoes. The spiders like it because the the leaves are small and it has many, making alot of hiding places. I also have some bushes that these spiders like for the same reason, the leaves are all real tiny 1-1.5 cm long and it gives alot of places for the spiders to hide and catch food. I guess it depends on the local variety of spider you have. on a balcony you probably want orb weaver type spiders to build thier webs in your railing to catch the flying insects, where I want my spiders to crawl on the ground and go hunt insects.

ps

I have tried to implement a layered type garden where you don't have all of one type of plant in one area and anuother plant in a different area but have layers of plants that all grow next to each other and halp each other. like growning garlic in withthe straberries and letting this flower grow as ground covering to prevent weeds from springing up.

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"If they're not gonna make a distinction between Muslims and violent extremists, then why should I take the time to distinguish between decent, fearful white people and racists?"

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The Famous Druid

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Icon 1 posted July 06, 2010 06:48      Profile for The Famous Druid     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Try garlic, lavendar, rosemary, basil, thyme, or mint. They all repel some insects, it's just a matter of finding out if they work with the insects you're having trouble with.

In the short term, you spray a solution onto your vegetables, in the longer term, plant them alongside.

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GrumpySteen

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Icon 1 posted July 06, 2010 10:23      Profile for GrumpySteen     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
fs:
Since it's a balcony garden, I'm guessing it's small. If you want to avoid pesicides all together, you can use mosquito netting. You'll have to go over the plants thoroughly, picking off any existing worms and destroying eggs, of course, but then the mosquito netting will keep the moths from being able to lay new eggs.

Ashitaka:
Try spreading diatomaceous earth and setting up beer traps. Both work very well for snails and slugs.

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Mr. Geek 2U
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Icon 1 posted July 08, 2010 10:02      Profile for Mr. Geek 2U     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Hello! Hello! Hello!

I just got back from turning the compost pile and communing with the worms and found this. How about that!

First try soap. Yes. Yes. Yes. On some insects it dries out their skin, which is like bones for them. Wow. Others it just makes them poop and poop and poop until they are all pooped out.

I would suggest Dr. Bronners Castille soap. Storm the Castille! It is natural soap. Or try Dr. Bronners with peppermint oil. You can find it where fine old hippies shop. Peppermint oil protects the peppermint plants, and can protect others if you spray it on them. That is just almost like magic, but without the magician.

Put about half a teaspoon in a one-liter spray bottle full of water. Those kind you pump up are very handy!

Tra-La!

Next step try Pyrethrins. That is natural insect killer made from daisies. How about that! But don't overdo it! In large doses it is not nice to kitties. Stay away from pyretrums. Bad! Bad! Bad! Only spray the plants that really have bugs!

Finally, if things get bad, bad, bad in the garden, Organic Gardening Magazine says Malathion is OK from time to time. It is a chemical, but it breaks down fast and does not harm the birdies.

Always, always, always pluck off infected and leaves and throw them away!

Always eat your broccoli! Brush your teeth! make your bed!

And Mr. Druid hello on this fine day! Garlic can burn some plants, so go easy!

I like marigolds because they help keep bugs away in the first place. Tra-la, again!

Have a great day!

Mr. Geek 2U!

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fs

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Icon 1 posted July 08, 2010 13:11      Profile for fs   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Hey Skippy!

I love your posts. You always sound so enthusiastic.

I will try the soap next. The salt water seems to make them attempt to find new, unsalted leaf territory. They drop off and then I squish them. It doesn't help that they are getting bigger and kind of cute. They're less cute as little white maggoty hatchlings, but now they're getting big and fat and green (off my cauliflower leaves!) and starting to look like little inchworms, which are actually cute.

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Aditu
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Icon 1 posted July 09, 2010 10:45      Profile for Aditu     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
I can lend you a six year old to smoosh them.
Posts: 1355 | From: Osten Ard | Registered: Aug 2003  |  IP: Logged
TheMoMan
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Icon 1 posted July 09, 2010 20:03      Profile for TheMoMan         Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
____ fs, Aditu is not far off, toddlers to 1st grade can actually hear the worms eat, as my oldest daughter, said I can hear something chewing.

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Thanatos
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Icon 1 posted July 13, 2010 10:11      Profile for Thanatos     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
shave Irish spring over the ground that the cabbage is in...can't guarantee the taste of the cabbage though.
Posts: 87 | From: I don't dare say | Registered: Nov 2002  |  IP: Logged
fs

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Icon 1 posted July 26, 2010 01:50      Profile for fs   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Thanatos! Long time, no see. And other cliches said after it's been a while.

The salt water reduced the population, or at least kept more from hatching. I think the stepping on the ones fleeing the salt water maybe did more for the population reduction. I also found a couple daddy longlegs (the harvestman variety) hanging around in places without much to eat, so after I finished spraying, I relocated them to my cauliflower and brussel sprouts.

I have an actual cauliflower growing, even.

Of course, the stuff is on sale at the store last week for 4.90 a kilo (that's like 30 cents a pound in American).

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Posts: 1973 | From: The Cat Ship | Registered: Mar 2002  |  IP: Logged
Ashitaka

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Icon 1 posted July 26, 2010 02:45      Profile for Ashitaka     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by fs:


Of course, the stuff is on sale at the store last week for 4.90 a kilo (that's like 30 cents a pound in American).

That is why, even though I like homemade sauerkraut and coleslaw, I don't grow cabbage. I stick to things that are expensive even in season( fruits ) and things that are not sold at the store (hierloom tomatoes).

ps

i harvested my first potatoes of the year, something that is really inexpensive at teh store, but I harvest them early, when they are the size of a thumb or half a thumb, and that you can't buy in the store.

I wash em and fry 'em up in a cast iron pan. Some salt oil and hungarian paprika and then they taste amazing. Because they are round, they don't stick like potatoe slices normally do in a frying pan. they are also easy to cook all the way though, making the outside crispy, without blackening them. ( as you can see, I hate trying to fry up sliced potatoes in a pan, the are always underdone, or burnt on the outsides, and they stick to each others sliced sides and the frying pan.)

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"If they're not gonna make a distinction between Muslims and violent extremists, then why should I take the time to distinguish between decent, fearful white people and racists?"

-Assif Mandvi

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Thanatos
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Icon 1 posted July 27, 2010 06:27      Profile for Thanatos     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
I never had a successful lettuce or cabbage growing venture. headed leafy things weren't for me...no matter how hard I tried (not very, I guess). fs...email me...I'm not sure if your old email address works or not!
Posts: 87 | From: I don't dare say | Registered: Nov 2002  |  IP: Logged


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