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Tuesday, March 20, 2007



When you find time, the knitting mojo will come back :)

As to aphids, I sometimes have luck with horticultural oil. It works for many pests, and acts to suffocate them without anything toxic. However, it may not work on an infestation that bad. It works best as preventative or when it just starts. A systemic insecticide may be your best bet to save the bush. A systemic is poured in solution at the roots, taken up by the plant and then poisons the buggers. Although an insecticide, it doesn't require broadcasting over and around the plant, limiting the spread of the chemical and potential exposure to pets and people. Good luck!


I can pick up some ladybugs for you from our local nursery, they love aphids--it worked for me last year. I also have a machete. And brown upholstery thread and a needle to sew up the h'hog. Good hedgehogs are hard to find, and she's already seasoned it just right. ;)


Ladybugs can get rid of most of the aphids once the ladies get established -- but I'd try a bit of soap with water in a spray bottle (if you have a few bushes) or in a sprayer you attach to your hose (if you have many bushes). The soap lowers the surface tension of the water, the aphids breathe through their exoskeleton (like all insects) and they drown. The idea is not forceful spraying that knocks them off -- just get them wet. Every other day for a week should do it - but watch out for the next hatch -- it usually takes several cycles of application to get the population down to a manageable level once you have a full blown infestation. Next year just start soap spray at the first sign of an aphid and they won't be able to build up to such levels.


Lila looks like a little puppy in those pictures! How cute! Sorry about the aphids - my friend Shona says she treats her roses with a systemic solution in the winter which helps keep the aphids to a minimum in the spring. Then you can treat with a spray of dishwashing liquid and water.

When I had roses a neighbor told me to plant a clove of garlic alongside the bush and it would keep aphids away. I think it might have worked.

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