Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Squash Vine Borers

SVB's, (otherwise known from here on out as the "little bastards") are definitely in all my summer squashes, my Georgia Candy Roasters (winter squash) and ("damn-it") my pumpkins.  The pumpkins are hard to loose.  They were doing SO beautifully too.  SM is pissed about them the most I think.

We went out just now in the 98 degree heat.  SM on one side, me on the other and "walked the rows".  The butternut seems OK for the moment, along with the melons.  The cucumbers also seem unaffected.

While at work, I researched the little bastards and everything I read says there's not much you can do at this point.  Spraying the base with insecticidal soap BEFORE they bore in is probably your best bet.  Who knew?  Last years squashes were abundant, so at least now I know what to look for.

I did read that you could take a razor and slit the vine vertically and pull the little bastard out but all the wound sites I observed look a couple of inches long at least.  I don't personally think that the plant would survive. 

I'm now thinking that I'd like to protect the integrity of my soil for next year.  It seems that the worms will soon drop back into the dirt to pupate and turn into adult moths that will lay more eggs and start the cycle all over again for next years crop.

I just went out and yanked it all up.

Extreme?  Maybe.  But I do know I'm lucky enough to have a long growing season.  If I re-seed now I'll likely be harvesting late September, early October.  We don't typically get frosts until October 15th.  It's a chance I'm willing to take.

I've already re-seeded the summer squashes about 10 days ago so they've just come up.  Slugs are more of a pest at this point than the SVB's.  I just looked at them and I don't see anything going on yet.  But they're still pretty small.

I'll have to re-order some winter squashes and pumpkins as the rest of my seed packets went into the laundry in one of my more "senior moments".

You know, I could be upset about this but oddly I look at this as an opportunity to see if I can succeed in a later start date and still get a harvest in.

Rolling with the punches...That's what it's all about!


  1. Tami: I vote plant more! Weather is so unpredictable these days, who knows...maybe we won't get a winter! Just go for it. I never dreamed I'd be harvesting broccoli and cabbage the end of June in CALIFORNIA!!! I'm just throwing seeds in the ground and crossing my fingers...seems to be working..we aren't going to starve to death that's for sure!

  2. You go girl!!! Just plant some more! I got hit with those bastards last year and they got everything! This year I'm trying to keep a close eye on all the plants

  3. Great Post! Best of luck with your late season planting. Looking forward to see how it goes.

  4. That's the best way to deal with disappointment. Find a way to make it work for ya!