where can i buy aphicide for aphids only

Lena MApril 27, 2009

Every year I have a serious Aphid problem with 40 different Ribes bushes I have in my home garden. Aphids feed on new growth and multiply in geometric progressions. So I have to fight them relentlessly or I end up with crippled branches that never grow more than a few inches instead of several feet. Aphids effect fruit yields the following year.

My garden is too large to handpick or powerwash aphids. I always try soaps/oils, but always have to move on to something stronger. Soaps and oils choke plants before they choke aphids.

I end up using natural Pyretherins, which breakdown rapidly, but they are very toxic to all insects. I don't want to kill ANYTHING other than aphids.

I read about products developed specifically for APHIDS (Aphicides): Pirimor, Aphox and so on... Aphicides only work on aphids and no other insects. But I cannot find any aphicides for sale in stores or online. Have anybody heard about WHERE APHICIDES ARE SOLD?

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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

This product is not available for home use whatsoever. It can be considered deadly to humans and other mammals. It's not 'just' a cholinesterase inhibitor as many pesticides are. It's an ANTI-CHOLINESTERASE chemical.

Our entire nervous system relies on the production and function of this enzyme. The active ingredient in the chemicals you've mentioned causes non-reversible damage. Repeated exposures to the chemical can be deadly, especially considering that it is readily absorbed via dermal contact as well as inhalation and ingestion.

Although aphidicides are soft on other insects, they are considered deadly to birds and fish, and probably other aquatic animals. Tests have indicated that is is a suspected carcinogen for humans.

Still wanna go out and get some? ;-)

    Bookmark   April 27, 2009 at 12:59PM
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Lena M

I don't get scared that easily, hehe... I believe the best is finding a balance between chemical pros and cons (we all use doctors when we are sick, don't we?).

The chemicals I mentioned (Pirimor, Aphox) are only for commercial use, and need to be applied by specialized equipment and trained technicians.

But I am wondering if there are any alternative brands for public use?

    Bookmark   April 27, 2009 at 2:23PM
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jean001(z8aPortland, OR)

As was mentioned in your other thread, periodic harsh hosing every day or two for a week or more will deal with the aphids, preserve the beneficials, and avoid costly, sometimes nasty, chemicals.

That system works really well when you keep an eye on your plants, the blast the aphids before they become 1000s, then repeat as needed.

    Bookmark   April 27, 2009 at 11:08PM
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Since the presence of Aphids is an indication of plant health problems your soil is the real place to start to work on getting them under control. Any "cide" you use to control the symptoms of the problem will creat more by also killing off any beneficial insects that might aide in control of the Aphids.

    Bookmark   April 28, 2009 at 8:36AM
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Lena M

Powerwash? Soil problem? The question is: is there an aphicide?

Any plant can get aphids, there are many many different types of them. It has nothing to do with soil problems. These insects travel by air, or overwinter on plants. It is important to do winter maintenance with dormant oils, clean dropped leaves, but nothing is 100% proof. And in a large garden with a lot of similar plants using insecticides is the only solution. Unfortunately.

    Bookmark   April 28, 2009 at 11:51AM
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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

oosa, other than the restricted use chemicals you mentioned in your first post, I know of no other aphicides, sorry.

Unfortunately, you're working against the premises of IPM by planting so many of one kind of crop. That makes the control of a pest insect extra tough.

Have you tried the super-fine paraffin oils, or neem oil? Neem can be especially effective with pests that feed on plants, since it acts not only as an oil but as a growth regulator.

You might also consider bringing in a variety of other plants in order to establish a balance.

    Bookmark   April 28, 2009 at 1:30PM
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Aphids do not, in zone 5, overwinter on plants, the cold weather we have would kill them. At the appropriate time in the fall they do drop off the plants to the soil where they overwinter and when is is warm in the spring those that survived not only the winter weather burt also predators will climb back up to find plant material to feed on. Large Aphid infestations are an indication of unbalanced nutrient levels, usually too much Nitrogen that encourages a plant to produce an overabundance of new, lush growth, ie. a soil nutrient problem. This same infestation has been noted on plants growing in soils with the wrong soil pH, also a soil health problem. Too much available Nitrogen in the soil can also cause a plant to not uptake other necessary major and micro nutrients that help a plant grow strong and healthy and better able to fight off insect pests and plant diseases.
Any plant infested with an insect pest or plant disease is not a healthy plant and the only way to grow healthy plants is to make the soil good and healthy.

    Bookmark   April 28, 2009 at 6:40PM
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Lena M

kimmsr, thank you for your opinion, but you are missing the question. I am asking about aphicides, not your personal theory of life on earth. Please pay attention.

So far I hear that there are no aphicides available for home use. Oils/soaps/powerwashing don't work effectively for me. In this case my alternative would be natural pyrethrins. They are toxic, but break down rapidly with exposure to sun water and wind, so they are the safest of the other available off the shelf alternatives.

    Bookmark   April 29, 2009 at 12:09AM
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jean001(z8aPortland, OR)

In your thread on the Garden Clinic Forum, you said " if I don't uncurl every leaf, the next day they take up entire bush."

That's where things are going wrong. By that stage, the aphids have already been feeding for an extended period.

Because you know you have the same problem every year, the key to success is to keep an eye on the new growth from the very earliest stage.

Then, you will be successful with just the harsh blast of water when you start as soon as you spot the aphids, but long before the leaves are curled. Then repeat the water blast as needed.

With such close monitoring, plus repeated water blasts as needed, the leaves won't ever get to the severely curled stage.

    Bookmark   April 29, 2009 at 12:27AM
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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

kimmsr. Would you guide me to documentation that states that (in some locations) aphids drop to the ground in order to overwinter? I don't believe that to be true but would appreciate being educated. In exchange, you should know that aphids will typically lay jillions of eggs in the fall, which are quite capable of overwintering in the nooks and crannies of woody plants.

A couple of thoroughly applied dormant oil applications should help to control that life stage.

    Bookmark   April 29, 2009 at 12:55PM
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oosa, I did not miss the question. The presence of so many Aphids is a symptom of a problem with your plants. Determine what that problem is and solve it and you will not have such a large Aphid problem. That the solution to the problem is in your soil has been known for many years.

    Bookmark   April 30, 2009 at 7:43AM
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Lena M

kimmsr's favorite forum is soil, so they are going to continue to insist on soil being the problem in every case. I've seen kimmsr's replies to different kinds of questions on this site, and they are all the same - fix the soil. I am glad kimmsr is not a Windex forum fan. LOL

    Bookmark   May 4, 2009 at 3:26PM
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Some of the current writers that will tell you that the health of your soil will aid in keeping insect pests and plant disease at bay include Lee Reich, Ann Lovejoy, Rebecca Coles, P. Allen Smith, Jamie Durie, and then going back in time you will find Masanobu Fukuoka along with Lady Eve Balfour, Friend Sykes, Sir Albert Howard, J. I. Rodale, Robert Rodale, and many more than I can think of at this time.
If you are having a continuing problem with an insect pest the place to start looking for a solution to that problem is the soil. Common sense says you use Windex, or some similar product, to clean windows and for no other reason.

    Bookmark   May 5, 2009 at 8:35AM
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oosa, as far as I could check there is no "aphicide"; defined as a product that will kill aphids only. Bt (Kurstaki), in my opinion, comes closest to a specific chemical but its selectiveness extends to all Lepidoptera which includes more species than I can count. As yet we do not know that it does no harm to other organisms. There are investigations into its effects on human beings. What can I say, except repeat the statement:- "There is no safe chemical; only safe ways of using chemicals". That applies to carbamates, ammonia and vinegar equally.
But the forum is IPM and we should look at the other tools in the box. Regardless of your choice or combination thereof, be prepared to lose some of the product. In IPM especially, there is no free lunch, especially not for the pest, we hope! The soil is a factor, an important one, but not the only one. There are the lifestyle and lovelife of the pest, cultural and biological controls and some others which I can look up. But why should I? You have the same resources as I do and you have demonstrated your ability to use them.

    Bookmark   May 6, 2009 at 7:18AM
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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

ronalawn...very eloquently said!

    Bookmark   May 6, 2009 at 12:39PM
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Oosa: I cannot suggest an aphicide that fits your need. However, since you know you will have the problem every year, you may have very good luck with importing lady beetle larvae. The larvae can be very quick, effective and thorough in cleaning up an aphid infestation. More often than not I am impatient and reach for the spray. Occasionally I let the larvae do the work for me at their own pace. Last year I let my native lady beetles have the melon patch aphids but they were too slow getting their population ramped up to get the aphids before the aphids wiped out the melons. That's life! Had the melons been "seeded" with LBs early enough the aphids would have had the upper hand.

    Bookmark   May 20, 2009 at 4:36PM
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