Must be high water pressure as aphids are pretty resistant to anything less. It is very beneficial to cut off parts of the plant that has more infestation, then you can hose off the rest. I have tons of Cuban lizards here in Fl. Some foliar sprays (acephate, dimethoate) and soil treatments (disulfoton, imidacloprid, oxamyl) are “systemic insecticides.” These products are taken up by the plant and make its tissues and fluids toxic to the feeding aphids. Caution: While this spray is very safe for humans, some people are allergic to members of the nightshade family. The female wasp lays its egg by inserting its ovipositor within the young aphids. Noticing the return of the aphids this year, I will try planting the Marigolds. July 2018 However, on my Mexican butterfly weeds, a suction strong enough to pull off the aphids also tears apart or tears off the tender leaves near the terminal where the aphids most love to cluster. This year my plants are bigger and healthy looking with many flowers but no caterpillars. 🙂 Thanks for your help! Leave them alone and let nature restore the balance. I haven’t even planted them in the ground yet & they already have the tiny orange bugs. December 2018 I move them outside during the day in hopes of attracting more monarchs. Hi. The queen butterfly (Danaus gilippus) is also a milkweed butterfly that has stages similar to monarch development. Hi Larry, before you treat with anything I would suggest figuring out the ID of your pest. I have another little patch of milkweed without marigolds or onions and it seems to have the typical amount that I usually see each year. do you know what insect/ butterfly lays dark grey ovoid eggs? Ants, spiders, wasps to name a few. However, since you were successful with these plants last season, predators sounds like a more likely scenario…. An infested plant will also not typically receive monarch eggs. I also listed the Canadian provinces: Hi, Tony. Hi Gaye, it was a slow year out east, so that probably has a lot to do with your lack of activity. Thank you. So far, the results seem positive. So we went an bought several milkweed plants from a local nursery. Maybe Kirks Castile soap? In the case of fighting aphids, two homemade sprays have proven very effective in controlling aphid infestations. Hi Carol, the hydrogen peroxide kills fungus gnat EGGS in the soil, but not adult fungus gnats or aphids. Just started on this journey. In 2011, they showed up in droves on our tropical milkweed. Aphids all have similar life cy… I have more aphids this year than I have ever had! I read about sprinkling coffee grounds around the plants can help. Has anyone come up with a reason for the “black death”? In essence, coding those stimuli for a successful journey and return. I feel like in spring I should cut those geraniums down to the ground.. Hi Me’Shell, I have hear snail baits work well but I have never tried using them before: We don’t grow geraniums so I’m not sure who your mystery pest could be…good luck! Got my spray bottle with water and washed them all away. This is just what I need. Hi, I was wondering if it had to be Dawn dish soap, or would any kind work? Since the other area was well controlled, I decided I would sacrifice the one patch to the aphid gods. Or is it dead? To get ahead of false oleander scale or oleander aphid infestations, begin spraying your oleander with horticultural oil in early spring when its new growth appears. Milkweed is resilient, so it should grow back. I filled it with twigs and milkweed and put a screen top on it. Thanks Katie, it’s always helpful to hear what’s working for other gardeners! Worked like a charm. One problem that plagues almost all gardeners across North America is the relentless attack of oleander aphids. Unfortunately, these wasps are also targeting beneficial species, including monarchs! My neighbor had so many that they ate her plants to the bare stems.. She brought over 5 small to medium caterpillars and put them on my plants, they too disappeared after a day or so. It’s still cool here. This mixture does kill the bugs, but they came back so I did it again. Of all the questions I receive about butterfly gardening, “how can I control aphids on my milkweed?” is probably the most frequent. I’m starting the learn about raising Monarch Butterflies. Hi Diane, monarchs don’t overwinter (in any stage) in northern regions. There’s not a lot you can do when eggs/caterpillars are on the plants besides remove them to raise indoors (or move them to less occupied milkweed outdoors). The wasps cannot get every one of them. Hi Doug, any milkweed variety can harbor the OE parasite. Lady bugs and their larvae eat small monarch eggs and caterpillars too. Oh, and don’t ever use “roundup” or any herbicide containing glyphosate. Hope this helps…. There’s not a lot you can do when there’s eggs/caterpillars on the plants unless you want to remove them to raise indoors. Dear Tony, ok two problems..I found slugs on my garden milkweed plants..what to do..thenI have geraniums growing all over and they are chewed up by something..I keeping looking in the plants and cant find the culprit. I had planted some seeds before I left and when I got home the plants were so big and beautiful (the weeds too! (Checking for Monarch eggs first, of course.) The problem with the aphids is that they hurt the milkweed. put your egg shells in the garden Slugs and snails hate them. If I tried that, I would try to get the hang of it by practicing on a perimeter plant first. I never see them , I want to cut the plants but I do not want destroy the eggs . http://texasbutterflyranch.com/2012/05/02/want-to-meet-the-beetles-better-hurry-removal-of-milkweed-beetles-from-san-antonio-rivers-milkweed-patch-imminent/. After about 5 seconds, he hoses the plant down with water and those pesky milkweed invaders are dead. I know milkweed beetles can be a problem further south. BRUSH THEM ASIDE: Use a detail brush to brush them off the milkweed plants and get in those nooks and crannies without damaging the plants: 6. GROUND THEM: Those naughty aphids need a time out, so keep them away from their favorite milkweed plants by sprinkling coffee grounds around them. Tropical milkweed can harbor the OE parasite and has other possible issues which can negatively affect the monarch outside of the tropics. Could it also attract more monarch predators? Good luck! I want to get rid of these aphids without harming them. So, a compelling argument could be made for me to bring her inside. I see a lot of people here have planted Tropical Milkweed. I found my first Monarch cat and eggs today on my butterfly weed. Usually I make an onion spray to evict them & it works phenomenally! I have a major issue with the dark purple spots on my milkweed leaves. I usually try wiping them down with my fingers and hosing them off. It was months ago and I only sprinkled it once. I prefer to do this naturally and not bring her inside. No doubt the caterpillar and the developing butterfly are learning about their environment while in there. Unfortunately, the mosquito spraying in your region can wreak havoc on the ecosystem and that can keep the numbers down. I’d LOVE to hear your thoughts and comments on this. It shouldn’t hurt them if the oil is certified pure therapeutic oil… the kind that is safe to ingest. Whatever solution you choose to control aphids, remember that early intervention is your best chance for for defeating these sap sucking pests. The problem is here in the Dallas, Ft. Worth area, we are not getting ANY Monarchs this year. It is thought to originate in the Mediterranean and probably spread as oleanders were introduced around the world. Hi Tony I am bringing in monarch eggs from outside and have milkweed plants for feeding inside washable huts. I’ll also have to check and see what other native plants attract the butterflies. What’s your thoughts on that. A moderate stream of water from a hose nozzle will knock out the aphids without dislodging monarch eggs. I so far have 6 plants which are all Scarlet. I am looking for ladybugs. SUCCESS! The good news is I have SEVEN very healthy caterpillars who are unaware of my aphid problem and are just chomping away. Will buy more milkweed plants and go from here. I also have a really healthy number of lady bugs that mate and lay eggs over and over in my garden every year. I bought a pair of tweezers specifically for removing these milkweed aphids from my Narrow Leaf Milkweed plants. Was wondering what type of milkweed would I be able to plant. Hi Heidi, it seems strange that perennial milkweed would disappear in areas it was growing before…especially if you are letting it seed. They may also be eating some aphids, as the plants most accessible to the lizards seem to have fewer aphids. I am willing to buy milkweed plants but don’t want to subject them to the same fate. Also, I use cotton swabs…it’s easier to access small spaces. One plant is in tremendous sun, to the point it wilts, the aphids are happy. I live in South Dakota-but am definitely going to try the onion/allium/marigold trick! There are many options to choose from: If you’d like to try companion plants, marigolds and ‘summer beauty’ allium are “supposed” to repel aphids…they also attract butterflies…especially the allium. Hi Nancy, we’re also convinced of the repelling qualities of garlic…no aphid infestations since 2011. He is my hero!! As for dealing with aphids, there are many different ideas on this page if you go through the post…good luck and congrats to you and your daughter for raising a monarch butterfly. I prefer using the hose and nozzle. Hi all, I recently tried using “FIT Organic Fruit and Vegetable Wash” that I purchased at Costco. Overfertilization can also cause leaves to turn white. If you want to get rid of them permanently, try the old “Japanese beetle” remedy. I planted ten common milkweed in my tiny garden last year this year they have come up in a very healthy way and I think I planted them too close together. In desperation, I cut the plant right down in hopes it would regrow this year. Fall is upon us and it’s time to harvest your milkweed seeds. More raising info here. You can erraticate them for a severl months. This is considered a non-native species. It is still early, and our milkweed patches in Minnesota are still lifeless too. I’ve had more yellow aphids than ever on my tropical milkweed and they’re way out of control. I really do appreciate this! This is my 2nd year growing milkweed and it’s doing wonderful. To make the spray, strain the leaves out of the liquid using cheesecloth or a fine strainer. Congrats on all your monarchs and good luck keeping those aphids at bay…. They can analyze your soil, then give you specific suggestions to improve the quality. They’re still there and have taken over! There something wrong either with my plants or soil. After you’re done you can rinse or spray the plant with water. I do have Castile, however... Agree with this method. I do have some assylum and weeds growing at base of plants and there is a scattering of bark covering the soil. Milkweed is usually pretty resilient, but turning gray doesn’t sound good unless its gone dormant for the season? The problem with spraying in the morning is that’s when monarchs usually lay their eggs…so hopefully you get them all soon so you can stop spraying. Community member Micha B. also suggests wrapping the tape around a pencil to increase the sticky surface area: 12. Honeydew ends up as sticky coating on milkweed leaves. June 2018 Put maybe 2 tablespoons of dawn dish soap, more or less, into a normal sized spray bottle maybe 2/3 fullnof water and mix. If you have aphid-free milkweed, I would transfer the cats. Today I noticed yellow spots on my 3 month old plant that when photographed and zoomed in on proved to be aphids, which led me to this site learning to deal with them. I read on a few comments that soap keeps them from attaching chrysalis? My problem is keeping a good supply of milkweed and the ever present “black death” of some cats. I check my garden at least twice a day in hopes of seeing eggs, but no, nothing. Hi Alice, thanks for your message and yes, you can use photos on the site for educational purposes as long as you attribute them to the website. I use high water pressure to remove the aphids after making sure there are no caterpillars on the plants. Hi Kami, if the soap was rinsed off thoroughly after applying the caterpillars should be ok. I contacted the nursery re pesticide use, and they assured me that they only used a soapy spray…and only if needed. Hi Shirley, here are some of the most common disease issues that monarchs face: Monarch Diseases Info and Prevention (turning completely black is most likely a virus or bacterial issue). NO! A few species appear waxy or woolly due to the secretion of a waxy white or gray substance over their body surface. Especially with it being a newbie. The most effective way to insure a surviving monarch population is to stop and prevent the use of Glyphosate herbicides (Roundup). I eradicated many by crushing by hand. I just found out that the little yellow things I thought were monarch eggs are actually aphids.! You have a couple options left to regain aphid control. But the Journey North site says it is always best to have native milkweed – which is hard to grow in your backyard and hard to find. This same monarch flew back here after a week or so to the same milkweed plant where it was born to lay it’s egg. That’s a great idea Chris, I am going to add that to the post. We have milkweed growing in our school garden, and it’s infested with aphids! Hi Janet, while this solution may not be toxic, any foliar treatment left on milkweed will likely repel the monarchs. I cut back the eaten stalks of my milkweed. They’re on the one nursery-grown plant I bought, so perhaps she liked it better because it was more mature? 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