What's laying eggs on my tomato leaves?

Discussion in 'Gardening & Plant Propagation' started by Ravenlost, Apr 28, 2005.

  1. Ravenlost

    Ravenlost Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I keep finding tiny rows of orange eggs on the underside of my tomato leaves. Anyone know what this is? I haven't seen any adult insects, but they're obviously around somewhere.

    I crush the eggs, but would still like to know what I'm dealing with.
     
  2. tikaani

    tikaani Well-Known Member

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  3. stuckinsd

    stuckinsd Well-Known Member

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  4. Ravenlost

    Ravenlost Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Thanks!

    I clicked on all the links and I do think it's potato beetles:

    "Colorado potato beetle: The adult is about 3/8 of an inch long and has alternate black and yellow stripes running lengthwise down the back of its body (five of each color on each wing cover). It lays patches of about one dozen yellowish-orange colored eggs on the underside of the leaves. The smooth skinned larvae are pink to red in color and have two rows of small black spots on their sides. The larvae reach 1/2 inch in length when fully mature and possess well-developed legs. Both the adults and larvae feed by chewing the leaves and terminal growth of the host plant. Preferred method of control is Bt."

    Now I need to know what "Bt" is!
     
  5. fordson major

    fordson major construction and Garden b Supporter

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    Bacilus Thurgungis (sp.)

    looked up proper spelling(long time since colledge hort!)
    bacillus thuriengis
     
  6. 3girls

    3girls Well-Known Member

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    Bt is Bacillus thurengiensis which gives the caterpillars and other worms a monumental belly ache and then proceeds to dissolve same.

    There are various kinds available, some specific to certain types. I think Bt,israelensis will get the potatoe bugs. Check with your garden center or your Extension agent for what works in your area.

    Bt is harmless to humans and to anything that isn't a larvae of some kind. However, it will also nail the beautiful butterflies and moths, so you wouldn't want to use it indiscriminately.

    Based on an early experience with Dipel when it first came out, it may carry over from year to year. We had webworms in our trees, sprayed everything and no more webworms for the time we lived there. I have not had occasion to use it since, but wouldn't hesitate.

    Milky Spore Disease and Nematodes will get the grubs in the ground which will stop a lot of the beetles that are bothersome.

    Most garden centers carry all of the above, and there is always mail order. I would think it would be easy to find in Memphis.
     
  7. mistletoad

    mistletoad Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Bacillus thuringiensis v. tenebrionis is the one for Colorado Potato Beetles, but we find it simple enough to crush the eggs and handpick the beetles (I carry a gallon milk jug with some water in the bottom and just drop them in). The Bt kills at the laval stage I believe, which will be very soon if you see the eggs now.
     
  8. Ravenlost

    Ravenlost Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I'm just crushing the eggs daily. I haven't seen any adults yet and nothing is eating the leaves of the Tomatoes or Potatoes.

    When I was a kid one of our chores was to pick off potato bugs. Mama paid us a quarter for a quart jar full. Then we had the fun of feeding them to the chickens, who would go nuts!