How I Beat Aphids This Year (I think?)

Megan Venturella
Megan Venturella Posts: 678 ✭✭✭✭
edited October 2020 in Pest & Weed Problems/Solutions

In the past I have used soap sprays with neem, or shot them off with the garden hose. I had a friend tell me that aphids are attracted to ailing plants, and it was so frustrating at the time because it really didn't answer my question, which was what to do with about the aphids taking over my garden.

This year I started to get aphids again on a few of my plants, and I sprayed them off with the hose and then fertilized. I just used dried up goat manure and watered it in well. I'm sure you can use anything else. I was ready to pull out my collards since I thought this was the end for them, but the aphids didn't come back and they're growing really well. Could it be that my soil just needed to be amended and I didn't realize it? Maybe the lack of nutrients was making my plants sick and attracting aphids?

I really think this may be the case because the only beds I've seen aphids in this year are the ones I didn't fertilize. All the other beds are new and filled with compost from my animals. The plants in those beds require less watering and are healthier. What do you think?


  • marjstratton
    marjstratton Posts: 1,132 ✭✭✭✭

    Interesting. I may have to give that a try. I do have trouble with aphids from time to time, especially with broccoli that I was growing in a pot.

  • smik123
    smik123 Posts: 60 ✭✭✭

    I was away for a couple of days and my husband put the hose in the direct sun and then watered in an area that I think had aphids (I am new to this) and when I came back he showed me how he cooked them and they were gone.

  • Megan Venturella
    Megan Venturella Posts: 678 ✭✭✭✭

    @marjstratton It makes sense the broccoli would have issues since potted plants run out of all the good stuff in the soil so fast.

    @smik123 I am all for roasting the aphids, lol.

  • Acequiamadre
    Acequiamadre Posts: 269 ✭✭✭

    Any other solutions for aphids? I found some in my cabbage on my kale. The plants are healthy, and so I would like strategies to save them.

    Current thoughts: dishsoap

    dishsoap + neem oil (but i wonder about this since i will eat the leaves)


  • Megan Venturella
    Megan Venturella Posts: 678 ✭✭✭✭

    @Acequiamadre If they are only on a few leaves, maybe try picking off those leaves? You can also spray them hard with just water from the hose if they’re eating the tender new leaves. I’ve used dishwater and been before, and it all washed off. I never noticed anything tasting like soap at least.

  • Cornelius
    Cornelius Posts: 872 ✭✭✭✭

    @Acequiamadre Soap is my best friend for killing bugs (my other is garlic).

    @smik123 Revenge is a dish best served hot lol!

  • Hassena
    Hassena Posts: 345 ✭✭✭

    It totally makes sense! @Megan Venturella

    I'm creating vermiculture course for the grow network 😃 AND one if the topics us the benefit of vermicompost.

    Healthy plants can create their own pest repellents. It's true healthy soil can make the difference.

    Hope the aphids stay away.

  • I have issues with aphids again. If only I could get rid of the ants that farm them lol. I've found that really drenching an area will at least get rid of the ants for a while. I'm thinking about wiping down the underside of the leaves with alcohol on a cotton ball. It works for mealy bugs in house plants and does not seem to hurt the plant. Of course if you add some cayenne or other hot pepper you might get to see the aphids swell up and turn red (I kid you not lol).

  • Silkiemamuska
    Silkiemamuska Posts: 99 ✭✭✭

    @seeker.nancy - Central Texas I feel like I am singling the praises of diatomaceaous earth a bit tonight on this forum!😁 Great for kiling anything with an exoskeleton, such as ANTS. I have dusted with D.E. for the exact same reason, ants farming aphids on some of my plants. For good measure I will apply D.E. on the ground around the plants to stop any ants from following the scent trail back to the aphids. A heavy rain will wash the D.E. away and you will need to reapply, but it works really well.

    Just be careful about applying to flowers because you do not want to harm bees.