Sackville Community Garden staff dealing with cucumber bug 'invasion'

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Coming events
- New Soap Felting Workshop, Aug. 20 at 6:30 p.m. Where: Sackville Community Garden Cost: $10 for adults, $5 for kids Join Sarah Mullin in this neat workshop where participants will learn how to felt around a bar of soap from Anointment Skin Care. Space is limited so send us an email to sign up.

 

You go into your garden and are attacked by mosquitoes in the air, and your plants are getting eaten too - where can we catch a break?

The cucumber beetle is hitting the community garden really hard this year and we can't help but assume all of Sackville is getting walloped.

Don't know if you've fallen victim to this invasive species?

The adult beetle feasts its way through young plants that are just breaking the ground. The affected species are those of the Cucurbits family-cucumbers, squash, pumpkins, gourds, melons, etc.

The beetle can also transfer viruses such as cucumber mosaic, which gives the characteristics of yellowed leaves, fewer flowers, and the cukes are commonly said to have a "bitter" taste. To get rid of these beetles, companion planting has been very popular. Plant radishes, nasturtiums, marigolds, oregano, and calendula in close proximity of your plants. These plants act as natural repellents so that you do not have to use chemical agents to get rid of the bugs.

Do you not have any space to plant anything else or any more seeds? You can cover the affected plants with floating row covers - you can buy them at Home Hardware. These row covers are sheer pieces of fabric that allow sunlight through, but won't let the bugs land on the plants. If you do choose to go this route, you will have to get all of the beetles out of the garden bed before you put the covers on - not doing this will be giving the bugs free reign over your plants and they will keep reproducing under the sheet.

Simply pluck the bugs off of the plant mid-chomp and squish them or place them in a sealed bag.

Have any questions for us or want to learn more about our workshops? Send us an email to sackvillecommunitygarden@gmail.com and we'll get back to you!"

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