Are beetles taking a bite out of your produce?
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June 30, 2012 — Squash vine borers and flea beetles can take quite a bite out of your produce production. Mike McGrath reveals the clever tricks two listeners devised to stop these pests. Plus a tomato blight update from Dr. Meg McGrath and your fabulous phone calls!
Hi Mike: Like everyone, everywhere I anguish over setting out my eggplants every season, realizing that I’m about to feed the flea beetles. I never seem to have floating row cover on hand (one of your recommendations for preventing their damage early in the season), so this year I cut the bottoms out of some plastic (three-gallon) nursery pots and pushed them into the soil around my little plants in the hope of keeping the hoppers away. (I also put some stakes around the pots to keep the wind from blowing them away.) As I send this email to you it’s been about three weeks, and not a single flea beetle has been able to make the high jump over the pot rims (about ten inches). It works so well that even my neighbor, who usually “just dusts the plants with Sevin.” is using a similar type of physical protection. Thanks for your show. You add so much to my enjoyment of the garden. Get the answer »