Whitefly dilemma

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Blueaussi

New Member
I got back from my trip up to New York to find an enormous whitefly outbreak. The air is thick with them, and they're all over the herbs, vegetables, and ornamentals.

I've put this thread in the organic forum deliberately, as the dilemma is how do I treat for the whitefly and not hurt my lovely tree frogs? I've put out yellow sticky traps around all the gardens, but that's just a drop in the bucket. I'm going to order some green lace wings, but they'll take a week or so to get here.

An aside: I do so miss having a good organic garden center here. It hasn't been the same since Sterling's closed.

Anyway, any other suggestions for something I could try that wouldn't hurt my beloved frogs?

Reading about control and integrated pest management, I found an interesting fact. Let me back up a bit. When I first moved here in 2001, there were whiteflies like nobodies business. I'd never seen anything like it. They would make shadows on the screens at night, and you had to keep your mouth shut and eyes squinted to walk through the yard at dusk. So, I ordered lots of lady bugs and green lace wings and talked to the neighbors about not spraying so much. We got the problem under control in about two seasons.

Flash forward to a couple of years ago when I realized I had an Argentine ant infestation. I joke about the Argentine ants around here because there's not anything I can do about it, and they really do keep the fire ants and termites under control. However, one of the articles I read mentioned that ants can be a problem in integrated pest management of whitefly because they eat the lacewing eggs and larva. Ah Ha!

*whiny voice* but why can't they eat the whitefly eggs!

Anyway, I'm thinking I'll have to plan to order green lace wings every spring to keep the whitefly under control
 

Crabbergirl

Super Moderator
Staff member
Sounds like you have done your homework. You know the answer, need I say more;)
I won't suggest hot pepper spray because if you hit a frog that is just cruel.
 

RonsGarden

Super Moderator
Staff member
I got back from my trip up to New York to find an enormous whitefly outbreak. The air is thick with them, and they're all over the herbs, vegetables, and ornamentals.

I've put this thread in the organic forum deliberately, as the dilemma is how do I treat for the whitefly and not hurt my lovely tree frogs? I've put out yellow sticky traps around all the gardens, but that's just a drop in the bucket. I'm going to order some green lace wings, but they'll take a week or so to get here.

An aside: I do so miss having a good organic garden center here. It hasn't been the same since Sterling's closed.

Anyway, any other suggestions for something I could try that wouldn't hurt my beloved frogs?

Reading about control and integrated pest management, I found an interesting fact. Let me back up a bit. When I first moved here in 2001, there were whiteflies like nobodies business. I'd never seen anything like it. They would make shadows on the screens at night, and you had to keep your mouth shut and eyes squinted to walk through the yard at dusk. So, I ordered lots of lady bugs and green lace wings and talked to the neighbors about not spraying so much. We got the problem under control in about two seasons.

Flash forward to a couple of years ago when I realized I had an Argentine ant infestation. I joke about the Argentine ants around here because there's not anything I can do about it, and they really do keep the fire ants and termites under control. However, one of the articles I read mentioned that ants can be a problem in integrated pest management of whitefly because they eat the lacewing eggs and larva. Ah Ha!

*whiny voice* but why can't they eat the whitefly eggs!

Anyway, I'm thinking I'll have to plan to order green lace wings every spring to keep the whitefly under control
What you discribe doesn't sound like whiteflies!
What you are probably experiencing are fishlies. There are several species. Some even look like white flies! They come from either a lake, pond, slow moving river or stream. They come out of the water to gather in mass to mate. Life span for some is just a few days, to a week and some only last one night before dieing after laying their eggs on the water.
White flies swarm when disturbed and tend to move around during the day, while fish flies swarm in the late evening!
In all casees fish flies are harmless to human, pets and plants!
In the evening they are attracted to lights and swarm around them!

Sorry Blue, there is no cure for these harmless insects. They will be gone in a few days!
 

RonsGarden

Super Moderator
Staff member
If that is the case then you can use NEEM!
It is a safe insecticide!
A little goes a long way!
Unfortunately it is a non-selective type that will kill off all insects!
 

Blueaussi

New Member
Neem will kill my lovely squirrel tree frogs, though, which is why this is such a dilemma. I love my frogs, and won't do anything that would kill them.
 

Crabbergirl

Super Moderator
Staff member
Ron,
We have midge flies or blind mosquitos. They actually pile up under lights by the millions. I have used a shovle to remove them from around my doors! They usually die with in a few hours of hatching but the hatch will last about 3 weeks. That's how we know it's time to crab!
 

levi murphy

New Member
This is a real dilemma...your precious tree frogs and white flies.. may i suggest hand picking maybe you and a team of friends, i think that's the surest way to at least reduce the white flies...it wouldn't be easy though
 

Blueaussi

New Member
Ha! Have you ever tried to snatch a handful of whiteflies out of the air?

I'd have more luck waving my sundew plant back and forth and letting the nasty little #$%@ get stuck.
 

jmsadare

New Member
White dilemma usually comes in waves for me. We had the wave of spring, leaving nothing for a few months and we now have a second wave. I am not worried about this season, with the exception of the pulse can give people in the spring. I put on yellow sticky traps, but I do not think I'll order more wings of lace. There are lots of ladybugs around, and I continue to find their eggs, when I look at the leaves.
 

Bradeen

New Member
This is a real dilemma...your precious tree frogs and white flies.. may i suggest hand picking maybe you and a team of friends, i think that's the surest way to at least reduce the white flies...it wouldn't be easy though
I am totally agree with your thinking.!
 


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