My birdhouse gourds have squash bugs everywhere. There are too many to spray. My gourds are starting to get eaten and have brown spots on them. Should I pick the gourds early to save them from the bugs? What can I do next year to stop the bugs? They just arrived this past week.
Hardiness Zone: 5b
By Ruth from Columbia, MO
You could get some tanglefoot and smear it on the stems, first off. They get stuck in it and die. Your gourds might be salvagable if you can stop them quickly enough. You can also handpick them and drop them into a little kerosene. Watch for their eggs. I think the eggs are on the underside of the leaves. You can crush them easily. And don't give up on the gourds. There are always ways to work around the bad spots with your crafts. Good luck!
I check the underside of the leaves on my squash plants often and scrape off and dispose of the eggs. I also hand pick the bugs. If you get started early,when the plants are small, and before they multiply into too many, you can get a liquid pesticide that mixes with water, and spray the plants early in the morning. Liquid Sevin or Malathion is a good choice if you must use insecticides. Pay close attention to the underside of the leaves. I have never grown gourds, but believe the same remedy would work.
Harlean from Arkansas
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