annual squash vine borer post

MiKru(7b/8)May 26, 2014

Does anyone on this forum NOT have trouble with squash vine borers?

My wife grew up near Atlanta and remembers squash and zucchini all summer long. I seem to get about two weeks of them until the plants are infected with SVBs.

I'm trying new things this season (I'll share if anyone's curious. So far so good), thinking that if I can break the cycle around my yard I might have less trouble with them (my neighbors don't really garden). That's the reason for my question: I'm wondering if its a local problem or if they just get everybody at some point.


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SVB adults are excellent flyers. It can't hurt to maintain good hygiene and reduce overwintering, but I don't think it will keep them away. We are so nice to them by planting squash surrounded by dark dirt. So easy for them to see as they are flying around. :)

I mostly stick with C. moschata, which they don't like. The year I experimented with squash, the SVB took out every plant except my old buddy butternut.

It wasn't that long ago when everyone dusted their gardens regularly with Sevin. Some gardeners still do, but a lot of gardeners now try to be bee friendly... which carbaryl most definitely is not. But it sure does kill SVB and squash bugs.

    Bookmark   May 27, 2014 at 8:53AM
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I've pretty much given up trying to grow squash - I grow organic, and SVBs are just too much trouble.

That being said, I have a volunteer that is showing a couple of baby yellow squash (summer type) with green markings - don't know where that came from, as I don't have any seeds like that! We'll see if I can get a couple of squash out of the plant before the SVBs get it.

    Bookmark   May 28, 2014 at 10:26PM
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When I lived up North.. One squash plant would feed the neighborhood all summer... Down here in the South, like you, I get a couple weeks then the dreaded SVB invades. This year I am trying succession planting...we shall see. I'd love to hear what you are trying..and the results!


    Bookmark   May 29, 2014 at 5:56PM
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I'm trying a few things:

I'm growing in containers away from my garden and right near my door. My first hope is that just by taking them out of the area where the SVBs from last year came out of the ground might reduce some exposure to them. I put them by the door I use a lot just so I check them often for eggs. There's also a lot of birds around the containers, so I'm hoping that they're eating a few.

So far so good. I've probably squashed about 12 eggs so far total (on three plants), but haven't found one for the past four or five days. Having them elevated in containers also makes them easier to inspect.

If (when?) the plants get infected, I plan on bagging up the plant and a lot of the topsoil in the container and throwing it in the garbage. My thinking here is that next year I can be sure that I'm not incubating any of them on my property.

At that point I'm hoping that I'll just have to deal with the ones that drift in from other gardens in my neighborhood.

And the funny thing? I don't even like squash and zucchini all that much!

    Bookmark   May 31, 2014 at 3:17PM
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I am having a bumper crop here.. But I have all of mine in containers on my porch and in those upside down planters from big lots. Mine are huge!! I am so excited!!

    Bookmark   June 12, 2014 at 10:42PM
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Glad to hear it elfs-garden. I've always wondered how they would grow upside down. Please report back after the season!

I've lost one of three to the SVB so far. They aren't super productive fruit wise, but the fact that they're still alive is enough for me right now.

    Bookmark   June 15, 2014 at 8:01PM
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So far I have harvested 5 good sized yellow zucchini. I have 2 large pots of squash bellow this and they are setting fruit now. I am very happy with this and bought 6 more upside down sets from big lots. They are only $1.50 here and I may just go get more on payday ;)

    Bookmark   June 17, 2014 at 11:05AM
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topsiebeezelbub(z7 Al)

Last year I planted Trombonccino (a moschata) and the SVB left them alone. I was feeling smug until the squash bugs ruined all the fruit. I will be more vigilant this time, The few I harvested were very good.

    Bookmark   July 2, 2014 at 2:12AM
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yolos - z 7b/8a Ga.

I am growing in raised beds. About 25 miles south of the Atlanta, Ga airport. Every squash is attacked every year unless I use row covers. These are covered with Tulle. I do have to pollinate them every morning before work but that works fine for me. This picture was taken a few weeks ago. Now they are outgrowing the bed so I will either have to raise the hoops or do some pruning.

    Bookmark   July 17, 2014 at 9:24AM
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