Spider Mites

by C. M. Schutter

I have Morning Glories, Moonflowers, Four O'clocks, and Shasta Daisies, and I discovered that there were spider mites on them. I used your recipe (2 Tablespoons salt 1 quart warm water, Kills cabbage worms and spider mites - mix and spray as needed) and did as directed,in the evening when the sun was not shining on them.

I sprayed them on the leaves of the plants, and within about thirty minutes, the leaves were looking like wet spinach. I quickly sprayed with fresh water, but now (two days later) a large number of the leaves appear to be dead, dying, or like wet spinach. All the spider mites are gone now, but the plants are not very healthy.

Is there something to do to help them? Or is that the way it is supposed to work?




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Spider Mites

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Jul 17, 2009
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Salt Spray Killing Plants
by: Larry, Webmaster

It makes sense that plants will each have a different degree of hardiness. Once again I'm sorry your plants were damaged and I'll modify those recipes with a warning to test the spray on a test leaf of the plant first in case damage is done by the spray.

Using a lesser amount of salt may be tolerable for the plants and still be an effective pest repellent.

You mentioned using 2 tablespoons of salt to 1 quart of water. Maybe 1/3 that amount of salt, or 2 teaspoons, would be just as effective and not damage the plants...

Jul 17, 2009
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Spider Mites
by: C. M. Schutter

I used table salt. And now based on my observations after spraying the same solution on different plants, the morning glories and moonflowers were affected the most, along with my Lime Basil (the leaves dropped off, but the stem is fine).

I would guess that since the morning glory vine and moonflowers and leaves grow so quickly under normal conditions that they would be affected by adverse conditions more quickly as well (as I saw).

Marigolds are a very hearty flower, so I would just guess that the heartier the plant the less adverse the reaction will be, or that there will be no adverse reaction as you had experienced. The four-o-clocks I sprayed were ok, they seem heartier too...

It's like the seed that fell on "rocky places, where it did not have much soil. It sprang up quickly, because the soil was shallow. But when the sun came up, the plants were scorched, and they withered because they had no root."

I don't think it was the soil or lack of it, or that salt got in the soil, it was that perhaps the leaves of the morning glory really soaked up the salt, more than other plants would...
I ended up cutting off some off the affected leaves.

Jul 16, 2009
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Organic Pest Repellent killing Plants?
by: Larry, Webmaster

An organic pest repellent made from salt water should be harmless to plants. But, then again, I have only little experience with flowers.

A 'cure' that kills both pest and host is no cure at all. The salt spray should be harmless to your plants. In fact I combine such things as bleach and soap with salt water to use as a spray with no problem.

I have and still use that spray on all my vegetable plants as well as on marigolds, a variety of house plants and banana plants with success. And I even spray the leaves in full sun and daily with no adverse effects on the plants.

When you say you use salt, do you mean table salt or rock salt? Rock salt would be much harsher and not recommended as an ingredient for insect repellent.

Also, did you spray enough on the leaves to drip a significant amount around the base of the plants? This would not be very healthy for the plants either.

I'm sorry that your plants are not reacting well to the spray and I'd appreciate you letting us know what happens to them.

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