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How To Control Stink Bugs Naturally With Organic Methods
Brown Stink Bug
By Karl Schultz
Here are some ways to control stink bugs in your garden.
Stink bugs come in a few varieties, such as the Brown Stink Bug, which are of course brown, with checkered borders beneath their wings, shield shaped, and about a half inch long. Green stink bugs are similarly shaped but green. Leaf footed stink bugs are one inch long with a yellow stripe across the back.
Green Stink Bug
The Damage Stink Bugs Do
Stink bugs suck. That is they suck the juices from leaves, stems and fruits and vegetables in your garden and fruit trees. The are partial to tomatoes, peas, peaches and pecans.
All stink bugs emit a distinct, awful odor when smashed or handled, hence the name. You will know one when you smell it, they smell awful.
How To Kill Stink Bugs Naturally With Eco Friendly Methods
The least toxic ways to deal with stink bugs are to control them only if you are suffering extensive damage.
Remember, topical pesticides often kill your good bugs, so if you nuke your plants for stink bugs you many end up with an aphid problem later because you killed all your ladybugs.
Control weeds that stink bugs live and breed in and destroy egg clusters by hand.
Properly identify stink bugs before treating.
You won't want to kill beneficial beetles thinking they are stink bugs. For more information on beneficial insects such as lacewings and ladybugs see this article Beneficial Insects
If the infestation is small, put on gloves and pick off bugs and dispose of them in an old coffee can containing a soap and water solution at the bottom. Do the same with egg clusters or the eggs will hatch if left in the garden on the ground.
Natural Pesticides For Stink Bugs
If you have to use a spray or powder try and use one that is earth friendly. Remember most will kill beneficial insects too so treat only infected plants. Check the label since some pesticides, even natural ones, can damage new growth.
Avoid over use of any pesticide, natural or otherwise since bugs will develop a resistance.
Try Safer Insecticidal Soap Multi Purpose Insect Killer, or Safer Bioneem, Bonide Hot Pepper Wax or Concern Pesticidal Spray Oil.
Keep pets away from the garden after applying even natural stink bug remedies since many can make your pet sick if they lick the leaves.
Wash vegetables that you have treated for stink bugs very well before eating.
Good Luck and Happy Gardening.
More info on organic gardening can be found at http://aggie-horticulture.tamu.edu/