“Aphids are really bad this year!” This is what we've been hearing on social media and from many home gardeners. Aphids can curl leaves, stunt plant growth, and make a mess by the sticky honeydew they exude. Some aphid species create galls which can also damage plants. Low to moderate aphid infestations usually don't damage plants but if you do have more aphids this year, there are many options for controlling them.
Aphids in landscapes and gardens can be managed by a number of different methods, including biological control. Biological control is when naturally occurring beneficial insects, mites, or other organisms (also called natural enemies) reduce a pest's abundance by eating or parasitizing them.
- Author: Elizabeth E Grafton-Cardwell
Citrus trees remain a popular choice for home gardeners in California, largely due to their ease of care, beauty, and functionality for food and shade. However, backyard citrus can also be plagued by pests such as psyllids, leafminers, cottony cushion scale, and mealybugs.
Longtime readers of this blog will know that we have covered the/span>
Praying mantids are well-known predators we often see lurking around gardens, landscapes, and sometimes near porch lights, waiting for a tasty meal to arrive.
Praying mantid adults are 2 to 4 inches (5-10 cm) long and are usually yellowish, green, or brown. Mantids (often referred to as praying mantis) go through incomplete metamorphosis (egg, nymph, adult) and have one generation per year. Overwintering eggs are laid in groups in hard, grayish egg cases which are glued to wood, bark, or other plant material. Adults and immatures (nymphs) have an elongated thorax and grasping forelegs, which they have the...
- Author: Cheryl A. Wilen
[From the UC Weed Science blog]
In what has been dubbed “dandelion-gate,” members of the Washington State legislature spent 20 minutes complaining about weeds on the capital's lawn. “In all the years I've been here I've never seen so many dandelions all over,” Sen. Mike Padden (R) said. “Is it your policy not to treat dandelions?” The department responsible for landscaping responded that the legislature cut its budget and now it only has 15 people covering the nearly 500 acre campus.