- The most effective folk ways to get rid of the Colorado potato beetle
- Catching a beetle before and after planting potatoes
- Self-production of poisons and their effectiveness
- Planting pest repellent plants. Pros and cons
- Poultry help
- Modern options for fighting the beetle using chemicals
The Colorado potato beetle is a “sore subject” for all farmers and gardeners. If nothing is done, with his “help” the entire crop of potatoes – an irreplaceable product on every table – will die. There are many ways to get rid of the pest. In this article, we will look at the most effective ones..
Probably no vegetable grown in large quantities in home gardens is as dangerous as potatoes. The bear loves it, aphids can spoil the entire crop in a short time, and untimely hilling will significantly reduce the amount of potatoes, but the most dangerous enemy of this product is the Colorado potato beetle.
Since the 50s, people, with varying success, have been fighting it in various ways. No wonder they say that man is the most hardy creature in the world. The very first year spent without potatoes provoked an already raging hunger. But the next year, people began to struggle for their survival, that is, the destruction of the beetle in the most primitive ways. Every year, new recipes for getting rid of this scourge were invented and transmitted by word of mouth, but it has not been possible to completely destroy it to this day.
The most effective folk ways to get rid of the Colorado potato beetle
The manual collection method is not ineffective – rather tedious. When families had 10-15 children who could walk around the garden a couple of times a day, and the potatoes were not in danger. And now opponents of chemicals get rid of insect pests in this way..
Catching a beetle before and after planting potatoes
With the first rays of the spring sun, long before planting, the beetle wakes up and looks for an “object” for food. If you carefully dig in cans or cut plastic bottles around the garden, after placing them on the bottom of cleaning from their favorite product, a large number of beetles gather in the traps per day. Having eaten, they cannot get back.
After harvesting, piles of peelings of potatoes and tops of the harvested crop should be spread around the garden. All the hungry will crawl onto them. When a large number has collected, it is necessary to douse them with fuel and burn them. You can repeat this procedure several times before the onset of cold weather, when the beetles go into the ground in anticipation of spring. If the garden is cultivated in late autumn, or even better, with the onset of frost, all insects end up in the cold and die.
Self-production of poisons and their effectiveness
There are quite a few recipes for decoctions. All of them are based on the fact that the beetle does not like unpleasant odors, bitter taste and solutions that provoke adhesion. Therefore, laundry soap is added to all broths. Here are a few of them.
There are plants that emit an unpleasant odor – bug, wormwood and others (different in each region). Steam the stems with boiling water along with the flowers, adding a pack of store-bought tobacco or dried tobacco leaves. After 2 days, strain and sprinkle over the potatoes. Some insects die, but the bulk leaves, although not for long. The smell disappears – the beetle returns.
Red pepper, mustard, celandine, dandelion stems, walnut leaves are bitter. Also steam and leave for 24 hours and add soap. The effect will improve if you spray the plants in the evening, so the solution is better absorbed into the leaves.
In the morning, in search of sweeter food, the beetles move on to tomatoes, eggplants, and if they are also processed, to the next vegetable garden. In order to avoid such transitions, neighbors simultaneously process their plots. Most of the pests will die of hunger, the rest can be caught and burned with the help of “baits” from potato peels, which will collect all the beetles from the garden.
The listed decoctions do not affect the larvae. They are sprinkled with wood ash or cement, from which most of them die..
Planting pest repellent plants. Pros and cons
There are no plants that would completely get rid of the pest. But many of them scare off the beetle with smells or simply do not attract it. For example, beans protect potatoes from beetles. It can be planted mixed with potatoes, if it is not poisoned with chemicals – beans will die from them..
You can plant mint, thyme, tansy, garlic, hemp, sage, wormwood, etc. along with potatoes. It is difficult for the owner to process the soil between the rows. In addition, foreign plants take more moisture from the soil, which affects the yield..
Poultry is very beneficial. Little turkeys, goslings and guinea fowls are taught to eat a beetle. The difficulty of this method is that it is required from early morning to collect a large number of beetles on their own or from baits. Before that, the bird is kept hungry. Subsequently, the bird is released into the garden, and it eats the entire beetle. Not entirely humane in relation to the household, and even troublesome. Indeed, in addition to the beetle, the bird will spoil other plantings, tamp and rake the soil.
These are just a few basic options for dealing with the Colorado potato beetle and it is better to apply them in a comprehensive manner. But the most effective today are special preparations for the destruction of the Colorado potato beetle. They are approved for use and sold in gardening stores..
Modern options for fighting the beetle using chemicals
Despite the large number of drug names, they all have three different effects – biological, contact and systemic. Therefore, when choosing a remedy for the destruction of the Colorado potato beetle, you should pay attention to the main active ingredient in this preparation..
The safest for humans and deadly for the pest are biological drugs, such as Batsikol, Bicol, Bitoxibacillin, Dendrobacillin. From the spore bacteria Bacillus thuringiensis contained in them, the beetle begins an intestinal disease and death occurs. Within three days after infection with the drug, insects still live, but are no longer active.
Many people use insufficient amounts of the drug. If you do not follow the recommendations indicated on the package, the tops will turn yellow and dry. The action of the drug lasts 7 days, after which the potatoes can be eaten. The disadvantage of biological drugs is that after the expiration of their action, the potato becomes safe for the beetle. Therefore, several treatments are required per season..
The most effective in recent years are systemic drugs based on imidacloprid. They have a long period of action. The composition “Prestige” or “Masterpiece” from the German manufacturer, the company “Bayer”, is processed potato tubers before planting, as well as the roots of tomatoes and eggplants. One treatment is enough for the whole season. Imidacloprid penetrates for a long time into the plant and into the tubers. The Colorado potato beetle does not even eat the leaves – immediately after it hits the plant, it dies.
In fairness, it should be noted that if the instructions for use are not followed, the beetle still appears shortly before harvesting. Then you can get rid of it with a contact drug “Aktara”, based on thiamethoxam. It is not absorbed into the tops, does not penetrate into the tubers, and destroys only those insects on which the solution gets. This safe treatment will be sufficient before the potatoes are harvested.
Before buying a drug, you should ask what group of poisons it belongs to. The drug should be diluted only in the proportion indicated on the package. Spraying insecticides is desirable in the late afternoon – hot weather promotes rapid evaporation of the liquid.
A face mask, clothes covering the whole body, gloves are necessary attributes when working with poisons. If it is necessary to treat the area with poisons in windy weather, you should choose the correct position so that the spray does not get into your face. After processing, be sure to take a shower, and immediately send things to the wash. You should not go to the etched area for several days..