Garden pests: What's eating my plants?
DO YOU sometimes go out in the morning to find pieces of your plants have disappeared overnight?
Identifying the culprit can be difficult.
First, clear the names of any suspects that couldn't possibly have caused the damage. For a start, you know it's not a sap sucker - they siphon juices out of the plant - so that eliminates aphids, mealybugs and mites.
Next, look at how much plant material has been removed. If big chunks have disappeared, possums will be your number one suspect.
Rats can also eat plant parts, particularly starch-filled sections such as bulbs, swollen stems or ripe fruit. Birds are rippers and tearers. You should also check for caterpillars.
Other chewers are grasshoppers, weevils, earwigs and beetles. Baythroid, a low toxic synthetic pyrethroid, will control many of these pests.
Snails and slugs are voracious chewers that leave slime trails as evidence of their activity. Sprinkle Baysol or Blitzem pellets to protect seedlings from their attack. Place pellets inside a container (like a piece of plastic tubing) to ensure they're out of reach of domestic pets.
Yates has a range of products available to control pests. Read more at www.yates.com.au