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We will be closed on Monday, May 27th, to spend time with our friends and family in observance of Memorial Day.

Aphids

Aphids are very common insects and are found in most plant in yards and gardens. They are small, 1/16- to 1/8-inch-long (2-4 mm), pear-shaped, soft-bodied insects. They can range in color from green, black, red, yellow, brown or gray. The best way to identify aphids is to check for two tail pipes (cornicles) found at the end of the abdomen. 

In most cases, aphids cause little or no damage to the health of plants. Aphids use slender needle-like mouthparts to feed on sap from plants. Signs of severe aphid feeding are twisted and curled leaves, yellowed leaves, stunted or dead shoots, and poor plant growth. 

Aphids can often be managed with non-chemical options or low risk insecticides. The following preventative and treatment measures can be taken to control aphids:

  • Remove weeds from your garden to reduce potential sites for an aphid attack. 
  • You can physically knock aphids off plants with a strong spray of water from a garden hose.
  • There are many natural enemies of aphids that are commonly found in gardens, including lady bugs, and lacewings.  Because aphids can multiply very fast, it will likely take some time for the predator insects to catch up and reduce aphid numbers. 
  • There are several low risk insecticides that can be used to treat aphids. Neem is a plant based pesticide that discourages aphid feeding. Insects are not killed quickly, but it makes them stop feeding and they slowly die. Insecticidal soap, horticultural oil and pyrethrins can also be effective at controlling aphids. It is important to remember to spray the underside of leaves as well as the top, because these materials will only kill aphids that they come in contact with.
Aphids

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