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Tomato leafhoppers?

Posted by suburbangarden 10 (?) coastal S. CA (My Page) on
Mon, Sep 13, 10 at 1:56

Hi all,
This is my first time posting here, and have done a search of this site only finding one similar topic that *may* have been describing the bugs I am seeing. The pictures and descriptions I'm seeing of other leafhoppers doesn't fit here...

We started out this past April planting about 13 various tomato plants but have had only an "okay" tomato crop (mostly the smaller varieties like Romas, cherry, and yellow pear tomatoes... our heirlooms haven't fared nearly as well) compared to last year. As the plants recently started dying off, we started noticing more and more of these green triangular (almost "buffalo-like" in profile) leafhoppers completely infesting the dying plants.

I'm guessing that these guys are responsible for killing off our plants, but our organic pesticide (seems to be mostly oils) doesn't seem to be doing much against them. We just tore out the majority of the plants this weekend and are looking to try another planting for the winter (heard of it being done), but want to be sure to get rid of these leafhoppers prior to planting. Since we really need to plant soon, I was hoping to get some feedback on control.

Has anyone else been having problems with these guys? Are there any suggestions for safer pesticides to use on them (organic if possible)? I love having home-grown veggies and fruits, and have a salad green garden, orange tree, some mellons and squash growing in close proximity.

Thanks a ton!

Image link: Tomato leafhoppers? (48 k)

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Tomato leafhoppers?

Ah, the old leafhopper. I kid, but I do have experience with the leafhopper,in general. I am not an expert by any means. But, I did have success growing tomatoes this past spring in Southeast Texas. What I would say to myself is that nothing gets in the way of the tomato. With little knowledge and 3 months of scanning the Aggie Horticulture Page, little I can come up with for an exact action. Of course, it's caring and attention that grows the best tomatoes.Not late breaking news in the science world. Back to the leafhopper.I live in Sam Houston National Forest and the only problem I had with them was a bit of foliage damage and possibly stem damage on 1 of my ark traveller. We have enourmous populations of insects that rival anywhere in my mind: and to rap it up I would say the best way to defeat most of the problems(with limited growing experience,although I think Im sure) is to have a fast,quick-growing plant at the start, to defend anything in its way. Nitrogen, nitrogen, nitrogen, a bit more nitrogen, and then blooms,then tomatoes. Of course, I have sandy loam, which loses nitrogen rather quickly in our climate. Have no idea how that might have helped you, but I saw your tomatoes and........

RE: Tomato leafhoppers?

So, I have the exact same bugs on a tomato plant-- a Large Red Cherry grown in a container-- as the one pictured in the first post. I am also located in southern California.

There are these green triangular shaped bugs and the brown/yellow bugs (nymphs of the green guys?) with little spikes on their backs. I don't think they are "leaf-hoppers" because they don't really hop. Tried to search for tomato pests from the California extension websites and don't find them.

Can anyone identify what they are?

The plant has been producing tomatoes and seems to be continuing to grow new leafs and flowers. Some yellowing and dying of lower leafs but that's probably overwatering.

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