Whatís eating my peppers?

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Elaine G

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Whatís eating my peppers?
« on: June 27, 2018, 12:26 »
The tops of my peppers have been nibbled/attacked! All lower leaves untouched.
 They are in the greenhouse.
Seems a bit high up for slugs and snails and the chillis, tomatoes and cucumbers also in the greenhouse are untouched.
Have checked the underside of the leaves for caterpillars etc but no sign of any critter.
Should not be lack of water as they have a constant supply.
Any suggestions gratefully received, thank you.

Elaine
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Goosegirl

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Re: Whatís eating my peppers?
« Reply #1 on: June 27, 2018, 13:39 »
Could it be due to water droplets on the top leaves acting like a lens when the sun is out which then burns them?
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Dr_Pepper

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Re: Whatís eating my peppers?
« Reply #2 on: June 27, 2018, 18:21 »
Hi Elaine it looks it could be  mirid bug (possibly Lygus rugulipennis) is munching the immature leaves before they open, the holes then appearing a bit like when you make snowflakes by folding paper. Googling it will give you a better idea than my daft description!

https://www.cropscience.bayer.com/en/crop-compendium/pests-diseases-weeds/pests/lygus-spp

You may find young green bugs or clusters of eggs if you look closely. If so,  squash them - there's no effective biological control so for commercial growers it's usually a hard chemical used.


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Elaine G

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Re: Whatís eating my peppers?
« Reply #3 on: June 27, 2018, 19:04 »
Oh yikes thank you Dr_Pepper that looks exactly like my plants! Havenít seen either the bugs or any sign of any eggs, I have inspected all the affected leaves. Just when you think nothing else can go wrong  :nowink:

Goose girl thank you for your answer, I would have preferred your option but unfortunately two are in growbags on a hoselock watered so no water touches the leaves. The other is on the bench some distance away but they managed to find that one too.

Itís a bit annoying as I had to buy those plants as NONE of my packet of peppers germinated.  >:(

Thanks again
Elaine

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Elaine G

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Re: Whatís eating my peppers?
« Reply #4 on: June 28, 2018, 10:57 »
Just to update.
Today I inspected the whole plants as opposed to the top crinkly leaves, and found a couple of the chaps in the photo. Sorry itís a bit blurry but they are not very big - yet!
Also found quite a lot of red eggs, lower down on the plant, which Iím sure were not there yesterday so spent ages clearing all the leaves.
Iíve always left those bugs alone, now I may have second thoughts  :lol:
Apologies for rusty knife!


Elaine
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Dr_Pepper

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Re: Whatís eating my peppers?
« Reply #5 on: June 28, 2018, 14:18 »
Don't kill that one Elaine - it's a hoverfly larva. He's busy eating your aphids!!
And the red eggs? do you have a photo of those too?

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Elaine G

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Re: Whatís eating my peppers?
« Reply #6 on: June 29, 2018, 11:50 »
Thank you again Dr_Pepper you have saved their lives, I see there are more of the hover fly larvae today.

Tried to photograph the red eggs but they were too tiny. Most have been brushed off now in an attempt to get rid of the whitefly which seem to love the chillis too!

Elaine

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JayG

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Re: Whatís eating my peppers?
« Reply #7 on: June 29, 2018, 12:07 »
Bit late to sow now, but see if you can get hold of some marigold plants (tagetes: French or African marigold, not calendula, the pot marigold.)

There are many claims about the benefits of various types of companion planting, and I can't actually prove it works, but in 10 years I've never seen a single greenfly or whitefly in my GH having always grown a pot of marigolds in there alongside the crops.
Sow your seeds, plant your plants. What's the difference? A couple of weeks or more when answering possible queries!

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Elaine G

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Re: Whatís eating my peppers?
« Reply #8 on: July 06, 2018, 11:40 »
 
And the red eggs? do you have a photo of those too?

Managed to get a picture if you can identify them, they are no longer eggs so I suspect they are baddies  :lol:

Elaine
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Dr_Pepper

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Re: Whatís eating my peppers?
« Reply #9 on: July 11, 2018, 07:27 »
Those are aphids (Peach-potato aphid or Myzus persicae to be exact). Sometimes you see tiny translucent, torpedo-shaped eggs near to aphid colonies - these hatch into little red/orange maggots that eat the aphids - they are the larvae of a midge called Aphidoletes aphidimyza. Pic attached hopefully
Unfortunately it looks like you have only the former and not the latter present so I suggest a bit of squashing!
Biocontrols+aphid.jpg

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sunshineband

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Re: Whatís eating my peppers?
« Reply #10 on: July 11, 2018, 17:25 »
The damage to the pepper plant leaves reminded me of how mine looked when we had the aphid attack earlier in the year, as the leaves buckle where the veins are damaged and do not expand properly.


Squishing as Dr Pepper recommended in the best way forward, but be aware that the little darlings fall to the soil when disturbed and then climb back up. If the plants are in a pot I hold them tilted over so the aphids fall onto a paving slad for eradication, but if they are too large, you could try watering the soil with a dilute soap solution after your "squish session" then inspect daily to catch up with any that survive before they breed
Wisdom is knowing what to ignore - be comfortable in your own skin

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Elaine G

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Re: Whatís eating my peppers?
« Reply #11 on: July 11, 2018, 20:35 »
Thank you for your replies everyone. have been squishing away! I'm sure the damage has slowed considerably now, but there is some looking exactly the same on a dahlia at the opposite end of the garden! - no aphids found on it.

I grew marigolds for no 1 daughter's garden and had 3 plants left. They were packed up to take to no 2 daughter, but got unpacked and put into the greenhouse fairly swiftly when I read JayG's post  :lol:
I will remember that for next year thank you.

Elaine

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sunshineband

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Re: Whatís eating my peppers?
« Reply #12 on: July 12, 2018, 14:51 »
Hope you manage to keep them under control..the ladybird and hoverflies will help  :D :D



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