Brassica pests

There were some bugs on some of the broccoli leaves and I didn’t know what they were, so I found this very useful site http://www.vegetable-garden-guide.com/growing-cabbage.html. They are mealy aphids. I’ve found some info on how to treat them, posted at the bottom.

Growing Cabbage – Pest Control

Mealy Aphids from growing cabbage http://www.vegetable-garden-guide.com/how-to-grow-brussel-sprouts.html
Large White butterfly eggs from how to growing cabbage http://www.vegetable-garden-guide.com/how-to-grow-brussel-sprouts.html
Small White caterpillar from growing cabbage sprouts http://www.vegetable-garden-guide.com/how-to-grow-brussel-sprouts.html
Mealy Aphids are a serious pest when growing cabbage – they will weaken the plants and introduce viruses which further weaken the plants. Spray with Derris if infestation is serious.

Eggs of the Large White butterfly. Caterpillars can defoliate a plant quickly so watch out for them. Inspect the underside of the leaves for clusters and squish them. Practice your tennis strokes when the butterfly is about.

Caterpillar of the Small White butterfly. Defoliates plants quickly, watch out for them. Pick off and destroy, use a nematode spray or spray with Derris. Eggs are laid under leaves in a random way, not in clusters, nor are they brightly coloured.

Growing cabbage to minimise pest problems will mean following some sort of crop rotation plan. This simply means not growing vegetables of the same family in the same piece of earth year after year…it encourages pest build up in the soil.

For cabbages this means – Broccoli, Brussels Sprouts, Kohl Rabi, Turnip, Cauliflower. Whether you are a seasoned vegetable grower or are just growing cabbages or any vegetable for the first time – pests and diseases don’t care… so get to know your enemy.

From http://www.bbc.co.uk/gardening/advice/pests_and_diseases/nonflash_index.shtml?mealy_cabbage_aphid

Treating mealy aphids – Organic

* Regular and thorough observation of plants.
* Spray infested areas with a firm jet of water.
* Spray with natural fatty acids, for example insecticidal soap.
* Netting and fleece can be used to stop the aphids spreading.
* For outdoor plants, aphid predators such as ladybirds, hoverflies, lacewing larvae and parasitic midges called aphidoletes, can be released onto affected plants.
* For greenhouse plants in a contained environment, parasitic wasps such as Aphidius colemani and Aphidius ervi can be used.

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