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Saturday, August 20, 2011

Kale, Whiteflies, and Vegetable Garden Clean Up


August is always the time, I lose my energy. This kale went untended for about 7-10 days. You can notice the holes. Not to worry. The kale will grow more leaves and the insects are probably grown and gone. My plant was to clean it up. I was going to remove the chewed leaves and let those healthy green ones go on growing. Kale will grow into November around here. No big deal right?


Insect Damaged Kale: Gary Pilarchik

When I went to remove the leaves, I was surprised by a field of 100's, yes 100's of whiteflies. The swarmed out from the plants and landed all over the place, including this gardener.

The whiteflies are small and moth like. Super small. But easy to see when you tap the plant. If you click these photo's you will see the little monsters. They will sap the life out of plants and leave sticky remains on the plants. They love kale first and will migrate to tomatoes. I am sure they love other plants too. I found them on my vine crops too.

Whiteflies on Kale: Gary Pilarchik
Whiteflies on Kale: Gary Pilarchik

How did I treat them? I had a huge infestation. The kale was cut back to stumps. It will still grow. The leaves were bagged and taken curbside. They got Sevin Dust on the stumps. The surrounding tomatoes were sprayed with Sevin too. Why? They are devastating and sometimes when the infestation gets so bad... you need chemicals. Good luck finding a pure organic spray for this. I would love a better solution. Please let me know if you have one.



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