Spider mites.

Ugghh. I fought them for 3 years with little success. If I forgot one 7 day spraying period, they were back with a attitude. Spider Mites like dry hot weather. The hotter and drier, the worse thay are. There are several miticides out there, but I could not tell you how effective they are. I do know that if you dcide to use chemicals, do not use kelthane no matter what any "professional" may say. Kelthane is nasty and is phototoxic to roses (guess how I found that out :( )

Non chemical methods include using a strong spray of water on the undersides of elaves to knock them off the plant or something like a garlic pepper tea mix. I use the tea mix this year and so far I seem to have no problem with spider mites this year.

GP TEA recipe:
2 cloves of garlic
2 habanero peppers

Place the garlic and peppers n a blender and add about 2 cups of water. blend until the peppers and garlic are thouroghly crushed and pulverized. If necessary add water to keep the mix liquid. After this, strain the liquid to remove the solids. Add enough water to this liquid to make 1 gallon of concentrate. Of this concentrate, use 1/4 cup per gallon of water in your sprayer.

I have heard that this mix is not good for some beneficial bugs, but I have seen no definitive proof of this ( ihave looked in many organic gardening books). Maybe somene else out here can help with this. It will definitely take care of thrips, mites, and aphids, and some ants (spray it on the mound and they sure move in a hurry)

Bruce Musgrove

Keep in mind that these are personal opinions.

The garlic pepper tea recipe is from "Dr. Dirt" aka Howard Garrett, a well known organic gardener here in the Dallas - Fort Worth texas area. I got it from his last book and have seen it in the papers several times in his column. In his new book he gives the recipe for Garlic tea as using 3 cloves of garlic instead of 2. I use the garlic pepper tea in combination with thuricide (BT bacteria spray for the caterpillars) and have had no problem with bugs as long as I keep a regular spraying schedule. AS far as spidermites, go once again I used garalic pepper tea on the advice of Howard Garret, and after reading REC.Gardens and learning more about the spider mites also started using a strong water spray to knock them off. So far I have had no problem with them this year.

No credit is needed on the page unless you want to credit Howard Garrett for the original recipes.

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