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Gardening Reference » Gardening in 2006
by x0meli0x on July 08, 2006 01:04 PM
I just recently started seeing this problem happening. It's been about two weeks that my crape myrtle had discolored leaved and I thought it was as a result of too much sun or something since it gets up in the 100's here in Tx. But lately I've been seeing these little white tiny bugs and now some black stuff. Under the leaves I also notice some sort of small fly or something. At first I thought it was powdery mildew but then as I continued doing my research I also thought it may be mealybugs. Now I am still clueless. I am not very familiar with funguses and pests. I purchased some ortho disease and fungus control and mixed two tbspoons with a gallon of water and I sprayed it for the first time last night. I have no clue whats going on, please help!
Bellow are some images:

Top:
Photobucket 1 photobucket2 photobucket3 photobucket4

Bottom: photobucket5 photobucket6 photobucket7 photobucket8 photobucket9

Also my aloe very looks like it may have been the main cause of them but I don't know for sure? Pics:
photobucket10 photobucket11

I really appreciate any help I could get, thanks!

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Why Me?
by Longy on July 08, 2006 10:25 PM
I think your crepe myrtle looks like it is deficient in a couple of nutrients. Potash in particular. Maybe iron too though it's hard to say. I guess it is in a pot. Has it outgrown the pot? Has it been fertilized and if so with what? How long since it has been potted up into the next size pot? Are you over/under watering?

The aloe is not the cause. It's probably got a similar problem. Pests tend to prey on plants which are weak or sick, so if you fix the soil, the pests will go.

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The secret is the soil.
by x0meli0x on July 09, 2006 09:04 AM
Yes it is in a pot, I haven't decided where to plant them. I potted up about a month back or so into pots way bigger then the little ones I bought them in. I used the miracle grow potting soil that is supposed to feed them up to 3 months. Not only that when I fertilize my other plants every month with miracle grow I give them some just in case. I also added some watering crystals to the soil don't know if that was a bad thing but I thought maybe it was a good idea. Also every other week I add Superthrive to my watering routine. I water everyother day depending on how I see the soil.

The soil is new though, you think that may be the case? The aloe was also reppoted up into fresh soil as well about two months ago.

Can you tell what kind of bugs they have?

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Why Me?
by Longy on July 09, 2006 09:38 AM
It seems as though you may be over fertilising. The ferts you refer to are pretty high in nitrogen and i think it has the plants a bit out of balance. Nitrogen in excess can cause lush, soft growth and this type of growth is susceptible to pest attack. Too much nitrogen and not enough potash and you have a problem.
Firstly, backoff on the liquid fertilizers. There should still be enough in the potting mix to feed them for a while yet. Probably until Autumn at least.

If you want to get rid of the bugs, (they look like maybe some scale insect and possibly aphids and whitefly but it's hard to tell.) Anyway, try a spray of whiteoil, 3 times, 7 days apart.

You can make your own whiteoil by mixing 1 cup cooking oil, 1 1/2 cups water and a teaspoon of soap or soap flakes. Put it in the blender and dilute 10:1 with water and spray late in the afternoon after the sun is off the plants. The oil will heat up and burn the leaves otherwise.

Hope this helps you out.

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The secret is the soil.
by x0meli0x on July 09, 2006 09:48 AM
Oh Thank You SOOOOOOOO Much!

I also wanted to ask, I noticed that on some of my other healthy plants that there was like one teeny tiny white bug and if I press it it squishes. Are they a threat to my othr plants as well?

SHould I spray ALL of my plants or only the infected ones. I really want to get rid of these pests.

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Why Me?
by x0meli0x on July 09, 2006 09:51 AM
Oh and what kind of potash do you reccomend for them as well?

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Why Me?
by Longy on July 09, 2006 10:32 AM
Just spray the affected ones and maybe a quick shot on any other bugs you see. It's not a toxic spray so it can be used on most stuff OK. Don't spray open flowers.
Re the potash, just layoff with the high nitrogen ferts for a bit. Have a look on the pack and it will give you an NPK rating. My bet is that the N is the highest by far. You want something with a more balanced ratio.
Have a talk to the local nurseryman or wherever and see what they have. Also check seaweed extract out. I think it has minimal N and P but a little more K (potash) so it may be a gentle way to bring the balance back. The seaweed is great just as a plant tonic anyway and is very useful to have for transplant shock when repotting plants.

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The secret is the soil.
by x0meli0x on July 09, 2006 04:29 PM
Thanks for the info Longy. I wish I could talk to the local nursery but they are usually no help so most of the time I'm on my own researching for the best method.

I found that one of the trees in the front have powdery mildew and in a trunk of a tree that we chopped off years ago I found some mealy bugs (boy do those look gross). Would the white oil work on them as well?

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Why Me?
by Longy on July 10, 2006 10:01 PM
mealy bugs (Would the white oil work on them as well?
++++++++++
Yeah it should knock them.
Funny thing about nursery people. Some are really helpful and happy to advise and help out, even if they make no money from it. Others just try and sell you stuff that you don't need. I went to one last week and i knew more about the plants than the man selling them. He tried to give me a speil about some plants. Just trying to make the sale. (I hit him with a few botanical names and he left me alone then;-)

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The secret is the soil.
by Buglady on July 13, 2006 05:20 PM
the white spots look like cast skins from aphids, a very common problem on this plant species.

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The Buglady
Suzanne Wainwright-Evans, www.bugladyconsulting.com
Educating the world... one bug at a time

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