Flea Beetle Damage

If you notice the leaves of your vegetables look like they’ve been hit with a shotgun blast…this is the damage done by flea beetles. They create hundreds of little holes and can be found on cabbage, tomato, potato, cucumber, melons, spinach, eggplant and more. There are many different species of flea beetles but what they all have in common is they jump like a flea…thus the name.

To manage this problem, head out to the garden early in the day when it is coolest and these insects are the least active. As you inspect your plants, you can usually spot these oval blue-green to black beetles. When you do, flick them into a container of soapy water. (Just add a bit of dish detergent to a jar of water.) Neem and insecticidal soap offer some help as well, but they aren’t a silver bullet.

If you want to read about this garden pest, here is a good website: http://www.extension.umn.edu/distribution/horticulture/M1210.html

And keep on top of weeds in your plot as weeds provide a place for flea beetles to eat and hide.

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