Monday, May 30, 2011

The Art of War

colorado potato beetle's yellow eggs on underside of leaf

Know your enemy.

In the garden that sometimes means knowing where insects will lay their eggs or what month or temperature to start looking for the signs that a pest is present. Every year in Brooklyn in mid to late May, I spot my first Colorado Potato Beetle in the garden and I crush it. But I know that if I really want to protect my plants from the damage this pest will cause, I will have to destroy the Colorado Potato Beetle's eggs before they hatch because it's the larvae that wreak all the havoc. Down at Floyd Bennett Field, the community garden has most of the crop pests and diseases you might expect to find on a small farm. (I spotted my first cucumber beetles of the season yesterday too.)

Clusters of eggs left on the underside of a leaf by the Colorado Potato Beetle.

No comments: