Can you identify my Sage Pests?

darkwolfe5November 16, 2009

So I've been fighting these little white things that barely move on my berggarten sage for a while now. every time I think I've gotten thel kicked and I start to get new growth on the sage...the next day I'll suddenly see drooping leaves and some that look eaten and the little white things are back!

What are they and how can I get rid of them, hopefully they won't spread onto my other plants. 2009-11-16

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jmsimpson9(CA 8/9)

You have mealy bugs. I use soap type insecticides to get rid of them and sometimes just a strong jet of water.

    Bookmark   November 17, 2009 at 12:25PM
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jean001(z8aPortland, OR)

Yes, mealybugs. But they suck leaves rather than "eat" them.

So what is you see that looks "eaten?"

    Bookmark   November 17, 2009 at 1:27PM
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I swear I posted a reply to this ages ago...guess it got lost... anyways here's something along the lines of what it said:

Thanks for the identification... I looked up a home remedy that said to mix some dish soap, water, and rubbing alcohol and spray it all over the plant then repeat in a week....unfortunately for whatever reason I had a small brain fart and used vinegar instead of rubbing alcohol...all the leaves have gone all limp now LOL...but the mealy bugs look like they've lessened...I won't know for sure till I get back home from the thanksgiving holidays.

As for what was "Eaten" looking...that hasn't been as much of an issue since I found a pesky green caterpillar munching away one afternoon and tossed him to the curb. Since there's very few leaves left at the moment on the plant, I think it'll be a little while till I can see if the sage will survive.

If anyone has suggestions to help me revive the plant faster, I'd greatly appreciate it :-)
(P.S. I'm a poor student, so things that I can do that don't involve going out and buying stuff is best)

    Bookmark   November 22, 2009 at 7:10PM
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jean001(z8aPortland, OR)

Give it time. Don't try to push it.

    Bookmark   November 23, 2009 at 1:04PM
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darkwolfe5 I'm a total moron....I found a recipe for a spray to kill the bugs...and instead of using rubbing alcohol w/ the dish soap and water... I put in vinegar.....all of the leaves that were left have shriveled down to poor limp yellow versions of what they once were...once I realized what I'd done, I sprayed it down w/ plain water and gave it a good watering...hoping to dilute the vinegar component as much as I could.

Think it'll recover? or is it just dead? :-(

    Bookmark   November 30, 2009 at 7:04PM
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jean001(z8aPortland, OR)

Wait & see.

    Bookmark   November 30, 2009 at 11:53PM
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taz6122(N.W. AR.6b)

Do you have a PH meter? If so check the PH and if it is lower than 6.5 you need to continue flushing the media or repot.

    Bookmark   December 1, 2009 at 4:03PM
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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

Actually, vinegar sprayed directly on foliage can kill plant tissue. Some plants are more sensitive than others, though vinegar is a well-known 'organic' herbicide.

Darkwolfe, I'd be hesitant to use that 'recipe' (the correct one) on sage without a leaf test, first. Plants with fuzzy leaves might not be the best candidates for alcohol.

By the way, the safest way to use the alcohol is to mix 3 (or so) parts water to 1 part rubbing alcohol and use it in a plant mister. Dish soaps can burn the heck out of sensitive plants.

What is the status of your plants at this time?

    Bookmark   December 3, 2009 at 10:55AM
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ya...I kinda figured out the herbicide part when the sage and the bell pepper plants both went to the yellow side of things LOL.
As for the mixture, I used a rather small amount of alcohol and dish 1 part of each to 6-10 parts water (rough guess)

Status of the plant?......well....there's still a couple leaves but they're rather withered and yellow and drooping straight down...otherwise the thing just looks like a couple twigs sticking out of the dirt :-(

    Bookmark   December 3, 2009 at 8:18PM
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There is a product made by Bayer Rose 2 in 1 pest control which is used in the soil, it kills all sucking bugs, including Mealies, Grasshoppers, and anything else that chews on leaves of our plants. I don't like using it because of the caterpillars that turn into butterflies, it would kill these as well. Diatomaceous Earth will kill crawling insects, and 'Neem Oil' kills flying insects, like white fly. Always follow the directioons on the boxes.

    Bookmark   December 6, 2009 at 3:12AM
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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

Any systemic, like the Bayer product you've mentioned should never be used on herbs or other edible plants.

By the way, to say that neem is used for flying insects is not correct. It is used to control insects that FEED ON PLANTS, whether they fly or not. This would include mealybugs, scale, whitefly, aphids, grasshoppers, chewing beetles, caterpillars, weevils, and others. Neem should be used with care.

DE can control any insect that comes into contact with it....the good and the bad guys.

    Bookmark   December 7, 2009 at 12:41PM
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