What is eating my pepper's leaves

tom_92July 29, 2014

Something has been munching on my ghost lately - hasn't touched any of the other peppers though. I pinched off a lot of the larger leaves that were nearly fully eaten yesterday. Today the smaller ones are being effected. Should i be concerned?
Thanks

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tom_92

Another view

    Bookmark   July 29, 2014 at 12:42PM
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tom_92

Hmm I apologize for the odd angle on the photos, I took them and uploaded them from my phone.

    Bookmark   July 29, 2014 at 1:17PM
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woohooman

Are you talking about the holes or did the plant in the second pic have much more foliage before? Are branches being stripped of foliage?

Kevin

    Bookmark   July 29, 2014 at 1:58PM
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tom_92

Well I lost quite a bit of foliage, as you can see a lot of my branches are missing. Also, theres loads of holes in the leaves.

    Bookmark   July 29, 2014 at 4:06PM
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woohooman

Lost the foliage to leaf drop or a pest?

The holes could be earwigs or slugs. Fully stripped branches are usually an indicator of hornworms.

A nighttime inspection with a flashlight can find the culprit(s) in many cases.

Kevin

    Bookmark   July 29, 2014 at 4:19PM
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tom_92

Thanks Kevin, I checked around the plant and found a few little crawlers. Removed them and sprayed her down with organic pesticide. Can I ask you, is it me or is this plant looking a little sickly? Its just an off color and seems weak on the branches. I just recently switched it into that larger pot.

Thanks

    Bookmark   July 30, 2014 at 3:50AM
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woohooman

Yes. It's pretty yellow. Either too much water or needs some feeding.

Most organic pesticides are pretty target specific. First rule to pest control is IDENTIFY first, then treat. What did you find?

Kevin

    Bookmark   July 30, 2014 at 11:23AM
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tom_92

It appeared to be ants. - Not sure why? I just checked again tonight and I didn't see anything. It doesn't look like any more leaves have been munched. Although, Im guessing the ants were not to blame for the munching, and what ever was has left due to the pesticides. I'll check again tomorrow night to see if I can find anything again.
Now what can I do for the poor coloration? I probably have over watered a bit. Especially since we've been getting a ton of rain the last week in new jersey. What can I use to fertilize? I just repotted and the soil is pretty fresh. I apologize, this is only my second year gardening :)

    Bookmark   July 30, 2014 at 10:50PM
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woohooman

Foliage Pro (9-3-6) at half strength weekly will do. Or Miracle Gro All Purpose (24-8-16) half strength weekly. If you go with the Miracle Gro, you'll need to find a way to get Ca and Mg to the plant. So, some water soluble calmag will have to be a supplement.

You might also check into MG Shake n' Feed. It may have Ca and Mg already in it.

Btw, the ants were probably there farming aphids. Check under the leaves for little tiny green bugs. They can normally be controlled with blasts of water every 3-4 days.

Kevin

    Bookmark   July 31, 2014 at 12:23AM
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tom_92

Thanks Kevin, I'll take a trip to Lowe's sometime this week. So anything 3-1-2 is good? Do you know of any good 3-1-2 organic ferts? I try to keep things natural.
Do you think this pepper will be able to pick up and start producing quite a bit this season? Last year I kept one out until around mid october.

This post was edited by tom_92 on Thu, Jul 31, 14 at 0:40

    Bookmark   July 31, 2014 at 12:37AM
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woohooman

I don't do organic for containers unless they're very large, like wine barrels. And even then, it's tough to maintain a microherd in ANY container. Home Depot has an all purpose organic fert that would suffice, but like I said, I only do organic for in ground and large containers.

October? No pods yet? I seriously doubt it. You might if you can extend the season some way...i.e., greenhouse, toting it in at night when frost comes, etc.

You can always overwinter it and get a head start next spring. Most of us start ours indoors, under lights, in January or so It's about the only way you northerners can do it. Even for us in southern latitudes, starting indoors is preferred to maximize our harvests..

Kevin

    Bookmark   July 31, 2014 at 12:57AM
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tom_92

Ive got 5 pods on it now, they aren't very big though.

I recently helped my a family member with a greenhouse, I can always bring it there.
Thanks Kevin :)

This post was edited by tom_92 on Thu, Jul 31, 14 at 1:45

    Bookmark   July 31, 2014 at 1:43AM
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