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outdoor growing - pest control

How do I control Grasshoppers?

The first question you've got to ask is are the grasshoppers doing damage... or are they just sitting on your plants? Try these simple things; if they don?t work, then we start using poison and other less desirable methods...

Passive Repellants

If they are doing heavy damage to the leaves, try placing a few dead ones on your plants, hang them there in plain view. Smash up some fresh cloves of garlic and spread them around your plants. Try Moth balls (They seem to repel all kinds of critters).



Set up some stakes around the perimeter of your plants, and use a fine mesh around your plants. It will let in lots of light, air, rain, etc but keep the larger critters like grasshoppers out. Make sure you do not trap a bunch of them within the mesh when setting it up. This method completely ruins a stealth garden. In addition, you must remove the mesh when you water/feed your plants, and you will have to keep raising it higher as your plants grow taller.

You can try spraying with a homemade mixture. Mix water, crushed garlic, hot peppers, tobascco sauce, and other hot and/or repulsive ingredients into a big pot, bring to boil, stewing everything around. Let this mixture sit for a few days, stirring occasionally. Strain the liquid out into a spray bottle and spray your plants two or three times a week, and after rainfall. Try not to spray the bud sites later into the season. That should keep the buggers away; however the sweet liquid may attract ants, which are easier to kill off.

Chemical control

If the hoppers are persistent, you can add poison (like diaznol or similar) and spray the plants, but be very careful not to spray the bud sites! Some chemicals are 'puffed' onto your plants, however after morning dew or rain, the powder will get wet and run into your buds! As a result, the powder will remain as a wet clump and cause mold, ruining your entire crop. If your crop does survive, you are smoking poison.

Stoner133 has brought to my attention that the natural enemies of grasshoppers include beetles, birds, mice, snakes, and spiders.

brokenear suggests this recipe:
7 pints water
1 pint liquid Sevin % Dust
1 pint molasses
10 pints wheat germ

Mix all together to form a dough-like substance and roll into balls to place around your plants. You can even mold a string into the balls and hang them in your plants. Apparently the hoppers love it, to death! Bait provides yet another option for grasshopper control. Sevin insecticide can be impregnated on bran bait at a rate of 2% or 5% to provide good control, when properly timed.

Early treatment is the most effective and may be the most effective way to deal with localized grass hopper damage.