Pesky Pests… Diary of a Rocket Gardener

Well, this week I’ve had a few problems with pests. I don’t know who these little bugs think they are, but they’ve totally taken liberties!!

flea beetle

Firstly, my poor mizuna… it’s looking a little hole-ridden. Every single leaf has been attacked by a tiny little creature which, upon further investigation, turns out to be a flea beetle. He’s quite smart looking, with little stripes going down his back and much like a flea he jumps away pretty quickly when he’s disturbed. (I refer to him as a ‘he’, but I suppose ‘he’ could be a ‘she’…I have no clue, beetle gender recognition is not one of my strong points.) There are a few different types of flea beetle, so if you see little holes like this in any leaves you can be fairly sure the culprit is a flea beetle.

Apparently younger plants are at the most risk, and brassicas are the food of preference for the flea beetle. To keep them away, you can cover plants with a mesh or add a mulch which should stop the larvae from becoming adults in the first place. The other way around it is apparently to plant out a little later on, thus starving them for a week or so when they first hatch. Maybe I planted too early…

2016-06-05 10.40.23

Next on the list is my Rainbow Chard. I did a little patrolling in the veg patch giving all the plants a close inspection only to find someone had laid
some eggs on the underside of the leaves. Not cool. I wiped them off. Sorry little eggs, but you just weren’t welcome in my garden.