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June 14, 2010

The attack of the striped cucumber beetle

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They are at it again. This is about the fourth year in a row that these voracious little beetles have come to feast on the cucumber, squash and melon plants I've planted. I never had them until about five years ago when they suddenly appeared. Usually I would have a few spotted cucumber beetles who were polite and mild mannered and ate only a little and the plants grew big and healthy anyway. The striped beetle kills the small seedlings and awaits the next planting with the same unsated appetite.

It's really a discouraging problem. With most pests or plant diseases, I can just feed the plants and keep them weeded, and they grow through whatever attacked them, but the striped cucumber beetle is an exception. When I went to check on the newly planted lemon cucumber seedlings, the plant and the soil surrounding it, were swarming with the hungry mob. This is the result of their work.
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In desperation, I got out an old spray bottle of Neem and really soaked the soil and the plant and sprayed more lightly the seedlings still in pots that I had ready to plant in the garden. I was amazed! The beetles disappeared! I went out today to check again to make sure they hadn't just hid for a while and then would return, but they are still gone. So I have confidence enough to plant the rest of the squash and melons now that I know they can be saved from the striped menace.

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At Green Light Neem II - 24 oz Spray #07824

Read More in: Remedies | Worms, Bugs & Gross Things

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Posted by Marilyn Renaker at June 14, 2010 2:40 PM
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