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6 Common Garden Pests In Colorado

InColor Plants Nov 17, 2022 3:46:22 PM
6 Common Garden Pests In Colorado

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Aphids (shown above) are little soft-bodied insects that feed by sucking the nutrients out of plants. They come in all different colors including light green, white, black, brown, gray and yellow.

They have a waxy or wooly appearance and long antennae. Aphids can be very destructive and multiply quickly. When large clusters of aphids inject their toxic saliva into plants, leaves can start curling or turning yellow.

How to get rid of them:

  • First, try wiping off the affected leaves. Spray the leaves with a mixture of water and dish soap. Let dry and brush the leaves off. Treat the leaves every few days for a couple of weeks.
  • Another option is to dust the plants with flour. It constipates the pests.
  • Neem oil is another option that is effective against aphids.
  • Lady Bugs love to eat aphids so consider buying a colony (either online or some local nurseries carry them) and release them into your garden.
  • Plant some catnip near your affected plants, as the herb repels aphids.


6 Common Garden Pests In Colorado: Whiteflies


Whiteflies are soft-bodied winged insects closely related to aphids. These tiny, winged insects hang out in clusters underneath leaves and are most active during the daytime. They particularly like tomatoes and bell peppers so check these plants often.

Adult whiteflies will scatter once disturbed but new eggs, which often look like white ovals without legs, will begin sucking the plant juice immediately.

How to get rid of them:

  • Start by blasting the whiteflies with your watering hose or spray bottle. This will cause them to scatter and dislodge.
  • You want to spray when temperatures are cooler to prevent any adverse reaction to the plants. Spraying in the evening allows you to avoid accidentally spraying any pollinators or beneficial insects.
  • Spray a mixture of dishwashing liquid and water late in the day. A good squirt of soap into a gallon of water is a great ratio.
  • You can also use a handheld vacuum every day to remove them from your plants.


6 Common Garden Pests In Colorado: Tomato Psyllids

Tomato Psyllids

Tomato Psyllids extract plant juices and excrete small waxy beads onto leaves that looks like table sugar. They develop quickly during warm weather and can cause damage quickly. So act fast to minimize destruction to your garden.

The first sign of infestation is a slight yellow or purple discoloration along the edges of the top leaves of a plant.

How to get rid of them:

  • Remove old plantings from the garden and place them in the trash. This will prevent the next generation from hatching. Mature plants have a better change of survival.
  • Plant tomatoes, peppers and eggplants early in the spring. This allows the plant to mature before the psyllids attach in the heat of summer.
  • Spraying the affected plant with neem oil can help control these pests.


6 Common Garden Pests In Colorado: Flea Beetles

Flea Beetles

Flea beetles are small, shiny-coated beetles with large rear legs, allowing them to jump like fleas. They come in numerous colors including black, bonze, brown, metallic, and striped. Look for spot holes on the leaves and a lacy appearance.

The small white larvae feed on the roots of newly planted seedlings and the adults become active in early spring feeding on plant leaves and stems.

How to get rid of them:

  • Try making your own homemade spray to control flea beetles. Use 2 cups rubbing of alcohol, 5 cups water, and 1 tablespoon liquid soap. Spray the mixture on the foliage of the plant. Test the mixture out on one leaf, let sit overnight. If you do not notice any adverse effects, spray the rest of the plant.
  • Dust your plants with plain talcum powder to repel flea beetles on plants.
  • Use white sticky traps to capture flea beetles as they jump.


6 Common Garden Pests In Colorado: Spider Mites

Spider Mites

Spider mites are tiny bugs that may be brown, orange-red, green, or almost translucent. They thrive in hot, dry weather. They feed on leaves, causing a graying, or yellowing and burned appearance and are smaller than the head of a pin.

Webbing on the plant is an indication. These mites suck plant fluids, giving broad-leaved plants a speckled appearance and fading color.

How to get rid of them:

  • Adequate watering of plants during dry conditions can limit spider mite outbreaks.
  • Start by blasting them off with cold water to remove. Spider mites do not like the cold. This also removes the dust that collects on foliage and interferes with their activity. Keep a spray bottle of ice water in the refrigerator and mist one or twice a day. Mist daily until the mites are gone.
  • Neem oil can also be effective at removing and preventing spider mites.


6 Common Garden Pests In Colorado: Japanese Beetles

Japanese Beetles

Japanese Beetles are about a half inch in length with metallic blue-green heads, copper-colored backs, tan wings, and small hairs lining their abdomen. They usually attack plants in groups which is why damage is so severe.

Japanese beetles feed on a wide variety of flowers and their presence is easily noticed by the skeletonized leaves they leave in their wake.

How to get rid of them:

  • Neem oil can be somewhat effective at reducing the image of these beetles.
  • Hand picking is the most effective way of getting rid of Japanese beetles. It is time consuming, but it works, especially if you are diligent.
  • When you pick them off put them in a solution of 1 tablespoon liquid dish soap and water, which causes them to drown.
  • Consider leaving the cup with the liquid and drowned beetles sitting close by the affected plant. The stench could deter other beetles.

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