Need suggestion, aphids on watermelon plants

edweather(Zone 5a/b Central NY)July 19, 2014

Noticed yesterday that a portion of my container watermelon plants have what appear to be aphids.Just trying to get a plan together.

This post was edited by edweather on Sat, Jul 19, 14 at 3:23

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northerner_on(Z5A ONCanada)

I don't know how large your plants are but I usually just hold the stem and squish them in my fingers. You may also try sprayng them with a soap and water spray which prevents them from flying, or washing them with a fairly firm jet of water which flicks them off. They are very fragile creatures and don't usually need any toxins.

    Bookmark   July 19, 2014 at 3:54AM
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fruitnut Z7 4500ft SW TX

I've had them badly on large plants. They are difficult to control because they are on the underside of leaves. The spray or whatever you want to use doesn't get to the insects. One also has to be concerned with poisoning the bees. I don't have a good solution on large plants/plantings.

    Bookmark   July 19, 2014 at 9:04AM
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floral_uk z.8/9 SW UK

Answered on your other post on the Vegetable Forum. But also a question: Are they actually having an adverse effect on your melon crop? Or is just an aesthetic thing?

    Bookmark   July 19, 2014 at 11:14AM
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fruitnut Z7 4500ft SW TX

I've had them so bad the leaves curled up. In that case on large plants blasting them with water won't help and might cause more harm than help. This time of yr the plants better be big or you won't get fruit anyhow. I hate to say it but a systemic insecticide might be the only way to kill them. And on a plant like watermelon that's not an option either for me.

    Bookmark   July 19, 2014 at 12:04PM
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I thought I read that soapy water sprayed on them would kill them. Like Dawn and water solution.

    Bookmark   July 19, 2014 at 1:22PM
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You have to control your ants - they farm aphids.

    Bookmark   July 19, 2014 at 4:43PM
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You might consider buying some ladybugs. Ladybugs love to eat aphids. If you do this, however, don't spray any pesticides ahead of time because it could either kill the ladybugs or cause them to leave the plant and go elsewhere. Ladybugs are available at many local nurseries.

If that doesn't work, you could try and spray neem oil or insecticidal soap. I prefer neem oil because it works a little better, in my opinion.

    Bookmark   July 20, 2014 at 9:36AM
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