Organic ways to get rid of potato bugs?

Discussion in 'Gardening & Plant Propagation' started by Ravenlost, May 12, 2005.

  1. Ravenlost

    Ravenlost Well-Known Member Supporter

    Messages:
    24,572
    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2004
    Location:
    MS
    I discovered Colorado Potato Beetles (larva and adults) devouring my tomatoes this evening. It actually isn't bad...yet! I only found two adults and four larva which the chicken promptly gobbled up.

    Is there any way to get rid of them organically other than picking them off by hand?
     
  2. MaineFarmMom

    MaineFarmMom Columnist, Feature Writer

    Messages:
    4,568
    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2002
    Location:
    Maine
    http://www.attra.org/attra-pub/coloradopotato.html

    This should be helpful.

    If you can rotate potatoes and all plants related to it out of the area for two years you should be able to break the cycle or at least slow it down substantially. More will fly in eventually but it should help.
     

  3. mpillow

    mpillow Well-Known Member Supporter

    Messages:
    9,569
    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2003
    Location:
    CHINA
    Diamataceous Earth can be used....dust plants with caution...have your mouth and nose and eyes covered.
     
  4. okiemom

    okiemom Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    2,292
    Joined:
    May 12, 2002
    Location:
    N.E. OK
  5. Ravenlost

    Ravenlost Well-Known Member Supporter

    Messages:
    24,572
    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2004
    Location:
    MS
    Yup...been picking them off...which the chickens appreciate! And I found the source...the briars outside the garden are covered in them! I've been stomping those.

    Thanks for the suggestions. Guess I'll just keep stomping and picking. :p
     
  6. tyusclan

    tyusclan Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    4,481
    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2005
    Location:
    Florida
  7. tnborn

    tnborn Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    917
    Joined:
    Mar 18, 2005
    Last year, I planted marigolds all in the garden. I had no bugs whatsoever. There is something in the marigolds that offends the bugs. I planted the marigolds in the potato hill next to the potato. No bugs.
    tnborn
     
  8. Ravenlost

    Ravenlost Well-Known Member Supporter

    Messages:
    24,572
    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2004
    Location:
    MS
    I always plant marigolds in my garden too. They just aren't very big yet and definitely aren't blooming yet!

    I'm still stomping and picking twice a day!
     
  9. Sparkey

    Sparkey Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    226
    Joined:
    Oct 22, 2004
    Location:
    Western WI
    Several years ago my 'taters were infested with these critters. Got tired of constantly picking them off so I took an old cannister vacuum out to the garden and vacuumed them off. I looked up and several feet away stood my neighbor, can of beer in hand, gazing at me ....he just shook his head and slowly turned around & went back to his house, obviously not appeciating creativity of this sort.
     
  10. Ravenlost

    Ravenlost Well-Known Member Supporter

    Messages:
    24,572
    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2004
    Location:
    MS
    LOL...I would've loved to have seen the look on his face!
     
  11. Paquebot

    Paquebot Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    14,801
    Joined:
    May 9, 2002
    Location:
    South Central Wisconsin
    Plant datura (jimsonweed) as a trap plant for potato beetles. The adult bugs will go for those first. You can then pick them off the datura before they attack the potatoes.

    Martin
     
  12. Cyngbaeld

    Cyngbaeld In Remembrance Supporter

    Messages:
    28,248
    Joined:
    May 20, 2004
    Location:
    SE Missouri
    Martin I did not know that there was any practical purpose to those beautiful plants. I've known about the poisonous aspects so really have steered clear of them (except for a voluteer from the irrigation ditch one year.) Now I have a good excuse to get them!
     
  13. chamoisee

    chamoisee Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    4,124
    Joined:
    May 15, 2005
    Location:
    Idaho
    I'm not sure about chickens, but I know that ducks will eradicate potato bugs within half an hour or so. Just call them over and sprinkle some feed on the ground (just enough to get them interested) and they will spot the bugs and go to town!!!
     
  14. Ravenlost

    Ravenlost Well-Known Member Supporter

    Messages:
    24,572
    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2004
    Location:
    MS
    No, I could NEVER plant jimsonweed on my place. I wish I could destroy every jimsonweed plant on earth.

    The summer of 1999 my son and two older friends of his consumed jimsonweed tea. They had read about Native Americans using it to experience the spiritual world, etc. Of course, these boys didn't know what they were doing (my son was 17, his friends in their early 20s). Luckily, my son got scared and forced himself to throw up. He ended up in the ER. One of his friends was DOA and the other lay next to my son in the ER and died.

    Both boys were buried on my 40th birthday and my son was a pall bearer at two funerals on one day. It was an experience that left permanent emotional scars on my son.

    I'd rather have potato bugs than jimsonweed.

    Did you know that you can become sick from touching jimsonweed or from burning it and breathing in the smoke? The toxic components vary from plant to plant and even from leaf to leaf.

    It's truly best to steer clear of it completely!
     
  15. fordson major

    fordson major construction and Garden b Supporter

    Messages:
    7,380
    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2003
    Location:
    east ont canada
    raven thanx for the heads up on jimson weed ,knew it was poisonous but had never seen it on our farm i thought ! we do not use herbicides except spot spraying nettles have added the flowering plant with the spiky balls to our list. not much here but want none hope it likes round up tea. try mixing marigold blossums in water,blender works well but leaves a taste. could try steeping the blossums then spray the potatoes with the tea
     
  16. WisJim

    WisJim Well-Known Member Supporter

    Messages:
    2,180
    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2004
    Location:
    WI
    Eggplant works well as a trap plant for potato bugs. Plant some well-started and growing eggplant around where you planted potatoes, and they will attract the first potato bugs so that you can pick them or deal with them however you wish. It works best if you can get the eggplant in before the potatoes break through the soil.

    Jim