If you’re growing cabbage in your garden, it’s important to know that many insects are attracted to this plant. Fortunately, there are several insecticides you can use to protect your cabbage from these pests.
There are three main types of insecticides that work well on cabbage: neem oil, pyrethrum, and carbaryl. Neem oil is a natural solution that can be applied as a diluted spray or drip-treated liquid. Pyrethrum is made from the flower Chrysanthemum cinerariaefolium and is considered one of the safest insecticides available today. Carbaryl is another synthetic pesticide that may be mixed with other ingredients to provide a more potent effect. These three types of insecticide can be used individually or together in order to get rid of any pests that may be destroying your crop before they have time to spread their destruction around your entire garden
There are several options for applying a systemic insecticide to cabbage plants. You can apply the product to cabbage plants as early as four weeks before transplanting, and you should continue applying the insecticide for four to six weeks after transplanting. During this period, you should rotate the treatment to avoid the development of resistance to the pesticide. Alternatively, you can use a natural insecticide such as garlic spray.
When used correctly, Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) is a highly effective insecticide for cabbage. It is safe for both fruit and vegetable crops and is particularly effective against cabbage worms. Bt works best when applied early in the growing season when cabbage worms are young. However, if applied too late, Bt may cause a crop hazard, and higher dosages are required.
Bacillus thuringiensis products are easy to apply. They come in spray, granules, and powder forms. Sprays are best applied to foliage while granules are best applied to the soil. In addition to spraying, Bti products are also available as soil and aerial fertilizer. These products work best when applied according to the directions on the packaging.
One study at the Botswana College of Agriculture concluded that Bacillus thuringiensis was the best insecticide for cabbage. It successfully killed larvae of several kinds of moths and butterflies. In addition, Btk was able to control fungus gnats and mosquitoes in greenhouses and standing water. Moreover, Bt is effective against armyworms, cabbage worms, green clover worms, and melon worms.
The use of BT is largely dependent on timing. The insect pests must be actively feeding to kill the larvae. Applying BT can take some practice, as it doesn’t work instantly. Unlike chemical insecticides, it can take a couple of days to kill the bugs. For this reason, it is best to follow the instructions carefully. If you have any doubts about the effectiveness of BT products, consult a professional.
Biological control is also an effective method to control the cabbage looper. To prevent this pest, plant hedgerows of beneficial plants can be planted in the vicinity of the crop. Insectary plants can attract beneficial insects such as nematodes. Insecticides, such as Diazinon, can be used on organically certified crops by combining them with natural enemies.
There is no single insecticide that is effective against cabbage loopers, but there are several products that have proven successful. In an insecticide field trial conducted by the Michigan State University Horticulture and Teaching Research Center, four products were compared to an untreated check. All of the treatments significantly decreased caterpillar seasonal mean numbers, but Baythroid XL and Coragen both outperformed the other insecticides. Additionally, the number of caterpillars was inversely related to the number of applications. Consequently, a single application of Baythroid XL or Coragen may be enough to control low caterpillar pressure, while two applications of Coragen may be needed in high caterpillar pressure.
Another effective insecticide for cabbage loopers is Spinosad. It is applied to the roots of direct-seeded or transplanted crops. It is applied two or three weeks after the first planting to ensure optimum control. In some conditions, a third application may be required. For optimal control, spinosad should be applied every four to six weeks. Several crops may need a third application, particularly if cabbage root maggot pest pressure is high.
Other products that can be applied to the foliage include acetamiprid (Assail 30SG) and permethrin. The latter is a better choice for preventing damage to the cabbage. The acetamiprid-based insecticide is also effective for controlling cabbage looper larvae. This chemical is applied to the soil around the plants to reduce the growth of the pest.
Fortunately, the most common insect that attacks cabbage is the cabbage looper. This pest is caused by small, white-colored bugs that feed on the leaves of the plant. These larvae feed on the leaves, causing ragged-edged holes in the leaf margins. This pest will also cause severe defoliation and contamination of cole crops. This pest is a major threat to the food industry, as its eggs are stored on the host plant and survive winter there.
Some gardeners use garlic sprays as an insecticide for cabbage, which will repel moths and butterflies that feed on the crop. Other types of cabbage moths prefer cruciferous vegetables such as kale, broccoli, cauliflower, and Brussels sprouts. Garlic sprays are also effective against caterpillars. In a study in Zimbabwe, the repellent properties of garlic sprays were shown to be less effective than a synthetic insecticide, malathion 25WP.
Although garlic sprays can be effective against certain pests, some people are concerned about the side effects of the compound. For example, some studies have found that garlic kills beneficial insects as well as pests. However, this method may be harmful to children and pets, so it is better to experiment with small amounts before using it widely. Also, make sure to wear protective clothing when applying the sprays to the crop.
If you must use chemical insecticides for cabbage, you can try the natural alternative: companion planting. Companion plants are known to attract beneficial insects like ladybugs and parasitic wasps. You can plant garlic with other Brassicas family plants. Garlic sprays are available in garden centers. But, before using garlic sprays, make sure you know the species of pest you are dealing with.
Using garlic sprays as an insecticide for cabbage can have its disadvantages. For example, garlic sprays can be irritating to the eyes and pepper, so keep the nozzle away from your face. It is also recommended that you keep the plants well protected and out of reach of children, and store the garlic sprays in the refrigerator or freezer. However, remember that garlic sprays spoil like perishable foods, so don’t use them on edible plants.
A great natural insecticide for controlling cabbage worms is neem oil, a plant-based insecticide extracted from the seeds of the neem tree. It works by coating the bodies of insects and interfering with reproduction. The oil also repels flies and mosquitoes, but won’t kill cabbage worms. It’s a safe choice for organic gardens, as it won’t harm the beneficial insects.
Biological insecticides are another option. Bacillus thuringiensis, or Bt, is a bacterium that produces toxin-producing proteins that kill caterpillars. Because Bt is harmless to humans, it is a safe choice for use on vegetables and ornamentals. While it is effective against cabbage worms and looper larvae, it will not harm adult ladybugs or bees.
If you notice the larvae of these insects, they are likely cabbage looper worms. They start as green, velvety-looking larvae, which can grow to be about one-quarter inch long. They feed by nibbling the leaves and spreading the damage to other parts of the plant. Eventually, they grow to be cabbage white butterflies, which have white wings and black markings. They can grow to be around 1.5 inches long and spread a wide area of damage.
Spinosad-based organic pesticides are an excellent option if you’re dealing with large patches of cabbage. Spinosad-based pesticides are effective against cabbage worm caterpillars but are not recommended for use on flowering plants or other flowering plants while pollinators are active. Spinosad does not work on sap-sucking insects, so it’s best to use non-grade DE for your cabbage pest control.
In recent years, intensive use of pesticides has become the norm, with a variety of consequences. Increasingly resistant pests and the destruction of beneficial natural enemies have made their benefits questionable. Additionally, pesticides also have harmful effects on human health. This review will discuss how to control insect pests in your organically grown crops. However, the first step is to understand what your natural enemies are and how they affect your crop.
The most common natural enemy of cabbage is the syrphid fly larva. This parasitic wasp feeds on cabbage aphids from inside, creating bronze-colored aphid mummies. The larvae of this insect can suppress cabbage aphid populations in your garden. Syrphid flies have also been proven effective at controlling cabbage aphids, and the UMass Vegetable Program has conducted trials to determine which flowers are most appealing to syrphid flies.
In Michigan, the main natural enemies of cabbage caterpillars and aphids are parasitoids. These insects feed on pollen and sugar sources in their adult stages. A study of this pest population found that flowers that attract these insects can be planted in the margins of the fields. The flower species used were chosen based on their low risk of supporting pests. The flower mixture included Buckwheat, Borage, Common Vetch, Coriander, Fennel, and Cornflower, with Sunflowers being added to match the Brussels sprouts flowering period.
Aside from predatory beetles, ducks, and wasps are effective natural enemies of cabbage looper. It is best to avoid using chemical sprays unless you are certain that your plants are large enough to be pecked and vulnerable to the worm. If you are unable to grow your vegetables, consider using floating row covers and traps to prevent the adult from laying its eggs. You can also install pheromone traps in the crop to detect the main flight period of the moth. These can help prevent the worm from spreading its eggs and affecting your crops.