Grasshopper Issues...

thirsty_dirt_77(3a)August 1, 2013

So today I returned home to find my garden FULL of grasshoppers ... and the damage is starting to show. They've eaten a little of everything but the squash and seem to have a taste for carrots as they've eaten the tops completely off some.

Alberta Agriulture says 10 hoppers per square meter can do significant damage. Well if I had to count I probably had at least a few hundred (seriously) per square meter.

I feel so hopeless and fear my garden will be destroyed by these pests. I put out some traps of cider vinegar with a splash of canola oil - if it catches anything significant I'll put tons more. Any other suggestions (other than chickens or guinaes unless you have some to send my way) would be appreciated.

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don555(3a)

Wow, that's awful! Sorry I can't be of any help, I've never had a problem with them in the city, I've only seen two or three in my garden so far this summer. Slugs, on the other hand...

    Bookmark   August 1, 2013 at 2:11AM
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SouthCountryGuy Zone 4b-5 SE BC(Zone 4b-5 SE BC Canada)

Have you tried neem oil? I don't have any experience with it but have heard good things.

Sounds like you almost need a flock of chickens. I am not sure if they would damage crops at all but I am sure you could find some very cheap. I would be tempted.

SCG

    Bookmark   August 1, 2013 at 2:54AM
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SouthCountryGuy Zone 4b-5 SE BC(Zone 4b-5 SE BC Canada)

double post

SCG

This post was edited by SouthCountryGuy on Thu, Aug 1, 13 at 8:49

    Bookmark   August 1, 2013 at 3:04AM
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thirsty_dirt_77(3a)

I wish I could use chickens but we're not set up for them and I am not about to get set up due to the cost. Due to predators in the sky and on the ground I'm doubtful they would survive more than a few days anyway....

I have a 25 lb bag of DE and a duster so I think I will give everything a light dusting tonight. I have a small bottle of neem oil but considering the garden is about 1800 sq ft I don't think I'll be doing the whole thing but maybe just concentrate on the perimeter and the plants (beans & carrots) that they seem to be eating the most. I have some fine netting (1/4") that I may use to tent in beans too... I'm most concerned about these!!

We went for a walk around the yard last night as the sun was going down and all the trees were covered with them, it was truly disgusting. So in addition to the DE and neem oil I think we'll be spray malathion around the garden and on the trees when they are out sunnying themselves.

Its so stressful to not have control!!! :(

    Bookmark   August 1, 2013 at 11:15AM
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north53 Z1b MB(zone 1b Canada)

It sounds awful. You have my sympathies. But unfortunately, I can't offer any solutions.

    Bookmark   August 1, 2013 at 11:29AM
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SouthCountryGuy Zone 4b-5 SE BC(Zone 4b-5 SE BC Canada)

Only from what I have researched I hope neem oil will save the day. While expensive locally I can buy it and ship it overnight if you should desire. Might be worth it.

If there are that many bugs I can't see anything but a systemic pesticide working. Those you kill will be replaced.

Let me know I am game to help

SCG

    Bookmark   August 1, 2013 at 6:53PM
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Slimy_Okra(2b)

Pyrethrin will knock the existing ones down. It still won't stop others from migrating into your garden, but it's a good first step. It is also a little softer on the environment than malathion or Sevin.

    Bookmark   August 1, 2013 at 11:52PM
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thirsty_dirt_77(3a)

Thanks for the neem offer SCG but I think I'll be okay.

I think Mother Nature heard my cries for help last night as there was significantly less hoppers today as opposed to yesterday - I attribute it to the wind and cooler temperature. That being said there is still waaaay too many.

I had to water tonight so there was no point doing any DE so tomorrow morning before it gets too warm I'm gonna head out with the neem oil, DE and my netting to built a fortress around my beans.

After all the research done last night when I should have been sleeping I've come to the conclusion that next time we see tons of baby hoppers early on in the year it's time to take action then and not wait.... And even then it's still a gamble as to whether or not it will make a difference - I watched a hopper fly higher than the house and as far as I could see tonight....

I've thought about using pyrethrin too but I have malathion around (works great on ants) so maybe next time I'm at Canadian tire I'll pick some up.

Thanks for all the replies and hopefully the hoppers pack up and leave .... One can always hope right?

    Bookmark   August 2, 2013 at 1:32AM
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