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Anyone ID these pests eating my Red Hot Pokers?


 
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martinog
Rank attained: Hazel Tree
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Joined: 03 Jul 2010
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Location: Co. Kerry

PostPosted: Sun Jul 04, 2010 3:26 pm    Post subject: Anyone ID these pests eating my Red Hot Pokers? Reply with quote

For the last 3 years my Pokers have been devoured by these "Flying Ant" type insects. Any idea how to get rid of them would be appreciated.


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Protein
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Joined: 05 May 2009
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 04, 2010 10:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

me suspects its thrips, but they look a tad too big....

Bet they never thought their act of procreation would have been caught on camera and for wwworld to see.

Embarassed

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Foxylock
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Location: cork

PostPosted: Sun Jul 04, 2010 10:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Howya Martinog,

These guys are soldier beetles and are actually considered a beneficial beetle and some gardeners will even try to attract them into the garden. They will eat soft growth but more importantly they prey on : cucumber beetles, corn rootworms, aphids, grasshopper eggs, caterpillars and beetle larvae. I can't recommend chemical control but if you are not squemish then pick them off the affected plants, alternatively spread a sheet around the plants and give them a good shake to dislodge the pests. There will be two generations of these guys per year so keep a watchful eye. Excellent photographs by the way !!

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Protein
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 04, 2010 10:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Spot on Foxylock

What seems as your foe turns out to be your friend

Quote:

Soldier beetles are highly desired by gardeners as biological control agents of a number of pest insects. The larvae tend to be dark brown or gray, slender and wormlike with a rippled appearance due to pronounced segmentation. They consume grasshopper eggs, aphids, caterpillars and other soft bodied insects, most of which are pests.

The adults are especially important predators of aphids. They supplement their diet with nectar and pollen and can be minor pollinators. Soldier beetle populations can be increased by planting good nectar- or pollen-producing plants such as Asclepias or Solidago.
Wikipedia
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martinog
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 05, 2010 10:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thank you very much Guys. It's great to hear I have "friendly" beetles in my garden. Pity about my Pokers Confused I'll see if I can move them around a bit. I don't know how they have time to eat when all they want to do is procreate!
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medieval knievel
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 05, 2010 10:53 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

are they actually eating the petals?
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martinog
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 05, 2010 10:58 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm just assuming that they're doing the damage as I can't see anything else. The ends of the green leaves and the stalks are also been eaten. I'll investigate further and let you know.
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medieval knievel
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 05, 2010 1:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

the reason i asked was that we had red hot pokers where the petals were being eaten by slugs.
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martinog
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 05, 2010 10:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Your dead right medieval knievel. I've just gone out in the dark and sure enough the stalks and leaves have both slugs and snails on them. Poor soldier beetles have nothing to do with the damage. I'll try the old beer in a saucer trick and see if it works.
Thanks again everyone for your help Razz
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Foxylock
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 05, 2010 11:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Just goes to show the soldiers always take the blame Laughing Laughing Hopefully now the poker will stay hot for longer this year !!
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