Winning the Mealybug war!

bihai(zone 9)October 19, 2005

I am almost ready to declare victory in my greenhouse over the severe mealybug infestation I had. I was trying everything. I tried Imidacloprid, Orthene, Cygon, Lady bug release, and finally turned to Neem Oil. The Orthene knocked them back, but did not eradicate them. Repeated sprays with Neem has done a lot more to get rid of them. Its harder using the Neem. It has to actually touch the bug or egg in question, so I have to spray tops and bottoms of leaves and stalks, which means getting up on a ladder to spray plants that are between 10-20+ feet tall. It takes a while to make the greenhouse circuit and be certain everyone got adequate attention. But its WORKED. I am down to spraying every 10 days from every 7, and my sooty mold is practically gone, there's no sticky honeydew, the scale was eradicated weeks ago, and all I see are isolated mealies that are in the juvenile stage. No adults. These must be ones that are hatching in "secret" places like in leaf axils that aren;t getting Neem so I will be more vigilant.

I recommend Neem over insecticides. I'm a believer now.

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This is so strange... I usually get mealies when I have tropicals in LOW humidity situations... :o) I have heard that Neem is a great preventative...

    Bookmark   October 19, 2005 at 11:01AM
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northtexasgirl(z8 FTW)

Congrats! Thanks so much for this info. Now I'll know what to use in my greenhouse if this problem arises.


    Bookmark   October 19, 2005 at 2:49PM
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Thanks for the info! I can vouch that the mealy's don't mind the humidity because it is hot and humid down here and I've still got them! As a matter of fact, for me, they seem to really just zoom in on my tomatoes, peppers, etc I just found a pot of seedlings covered in them and the pots surrounding them (addendium rose, key limes, palms, bamboo seedlings, etc) zilch.

Bihai, I gather from what you said that this is a non-toxic do you know if this would be safe on plants grown for food?

    Bookmark   October 19, 2005 at 9:53PM
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daxin(z9 Bay Area)

If you are tired of spraying every leaf surface, Neem oil can work as a systematic insecticide, which means you just have to apply a lot of the same diluted Neem directly to the roots of infected plants. The effect might take longer than that from spraying. Neem is perfectly ok for food crop as it is biodegradable. One just need to harvest 7-10 days after application.

    Bookmark   October 20, 2005 at 5:42PM
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OK, now just one more question...where can I buy neem oil?

    Bookmark   October 20, 2005 at 6:14PM
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Just dont get the Neem on the bromo's?

    Bookmark   October 21, 2005 at 10:11AM
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I found this post because I too am battleling an incredible infestion. These pests are truly a nightmare to combat. Since I had never seen these things before, I initially thought it was powdery mildew that had attacked my kings mantle, a plant I have had for years.

I'm sick about this infestation as it is gradually moving through my entire garden even as I attempt to fight them off.

I hope to win against these awful pests. I too would like to know where to find neem oil.

    Bookmark   October 21, 2005 at 1:08PM
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How much neem oil should one use in proportion to the water to spray for mealybugs? I'd like to spray the roots--how much of the solution should I put on the plants' roots? My hollyhocks are badly infested with mealies. I wonder if garlic oil/water solution would help. Thanks. Kamala

    Bookmark   September 20, 2007 at 12:23AM
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gcmastiffs(z10 Florida)

Bihai, are you interested in a Neem Tree? I stupidly planted mine too close to our shed, and I must dig it out, and either move it or give it away. It is at least 12' tall, and is a lovely tree.

My boss has one in his yard in Stuart (zone 9), and it is plenty big enough to climb up, or make a fort in(G). They are rapid growers once established. The foliage is very attractive.

If you want it, let me know. Then you would have a never-ending supply of Neem(G).


    Bookmark   September 20, 2007 at 8:14AM
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sultry_jasmine_nights (Florida 9a)

Neem works great on mealy bugs. I am always getting them on my mandevilleas. Mealys seem to love mandevillea. For potted plants I always tip the pot over on its side and it is so much easier to spray under the leaves, keep turning the pot till the whole bottom is done. Then put the pot upright and spray from the top down. Too bad you can't that with in-ground plants!

    Bookmark   September 20, 2007 at 9:54PM
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nyssaman(Z6 ON)

I have this stuff called biogrow which has neem oil in it - I mixed up with some water double strength put it in a spray bottle - one day I was being bugged (forgive the pun) by yellow jackets, which I hate with a passion - I began spraying one with 2 or 3 shots - within 5 seconds it was dead - this stuff is great.

    Bookmark   September 21, 2007 at 10:21AM
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