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Fending Off Squash Bugs from Organic Garden

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Adult Squash Bug
I’d like to just scare them away with a spray of my water bottle.  That’s not enough.  I had to do away with one adult squash bug and two more nests of squash bug eggs that I found on our plants this morning. You can see the brown, yellow or reddish eggs on the underside of the leaf.
Squash Bug Eggs on Leaf
Despite some difficulties, these plants just keep on growing.  The largest is climbing a tomato cage to the sky, kissed by the morning sunshine.

Squash bug nymph stage

Spray after spray of soapy water and scrape after scrape with a small, metallic yogurt top completed my latest humble gardening task.  I admire the determination of farmers who use organic methods on a larger scale, because it is undoubtedly hard work.

After several days of rain showers, when I lazily ignored the garden, the squash bugs turned the place into a love nest. They had been feasting on the plants, leaving some fruits too far gone.  I found several collections of squash bug eggs this time, plus I encountered groups of recently hatched nymphs.  I finally happened upon two large, adult bugs that had to be removed.
My job mostly involved spraying the plants with the soapy water, then scraping off the eggs or smashing the bugs and throwing them into a plastic bag.

The University of Minnesota explains what squash bugs are and how to deal with them.  I fervently disagree with using insecticide, for personal reasons, even if I have reduced yields.

The good news is that several squash plants are still surviving and producing good squash.  That includes a few zucchini.  We’ve already grilled squash once this summer and plan to do so again for the holiday weekend.

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