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Flies Attacking Crepe Myrtles

I have Crepe Myrtles on both sides of my front porch entrance. During the summer, these are normally plagued by Japanese beetles feasting on their leaves. This year, however, there are almost no beetles.

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My blessing turned to dismay when literally hordes of common houseflies are all over my Myrtles. They appear to be not only stripping the flowered buds, but the flowers are very pale pink, when normally vivid pink.

Anyone experiencing problems with Crepe Myrtles this year? Any advice for the hordes of flies? I've been swatting relatively few, compared to the vast numbers of them (flies).

Hardiness Zone: 7a

By ck384 from Huntingtown,MD

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August 10, 20090 found this helpful

You can get yellow sticky traps that will attract small insects and trap them. Or you can spray them with insecticidal soap, being sure to get the underside of the leaves. Good luck.

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August 10, 20090 found this helpful

I also mix 1 tablespoon of liquid soap in a quart of water in a spray bottle. Spray for almost any insects in garden & flowers. Good luck.

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August 11, 20090 found this helpful

I tried the soapy water this evening. Seems the flies are attracted to the sweet, excretions from the hard to see aphids on the leaves. On close examination, I can see the aphids moving with a squirt of the soapy water! Also, the flies didn't appreciate the water spray. I'm gonna repeat this several times.
I have several of the sticky strips hanging very nearby, They seem to help. Thanks for all your help. I was fearing having to remove my Myrtles.

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August 3, 20170 found this helpful

Yesterday I heard a loud buzzing when I walked by the crepe myrtle in my yard. I though there may have been a honeybee swarm, but it was 100's, 1000's of flies. I sprayed it (from upwind) with some home made peppermint spray (homemade Rodent Sheriff = 1qt. spring water + 2 tbsp peppermint (cornmint) oil + 1/4 tsp organic dish soap ~$2 to make). A swarm of flies took wing.
I also use the spray in the garage for spiders, especially in corners, and the underside of tables benches, plastic chairs, etc. to keep away black widow spiders from where I may reach. Repels the rats and mice too. Lots of rats in central Florida, even in a nice clean neighborhood. No cold weather to keep the population down. Damn things breed year round. Need more rat and black snakes to eat the rats and mice.

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