How to get rid of lice from zucchini
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THE courgette lice (or zucchini aphids) are a nuisance for every farmer. There cultivation of zucchini it is in fact among the most widespread and lice are among the most common parasites. These are insects that infest plants, especially in the spring season.
With careful monitoring and the use of natural remedies, however, it is possible to eliminate these unwanted guests from our beloved plants. In this way we will be able to grow them healthy and have abundant harvests. In this article, we therefore explain all the secrets to eliminate these parasites from zucchini plants.
The courgette lice
The lice that infest zucchini plants are the Cucurbitaceae aphids (Aphis gossypii). It is also known as cotton aphid, since it also infests this other plant.
In appearance they are small insects of about 2 mm in length, with a very variable color. In fact, they can be greenish or greyish-dark when adults, yellowish in the juvenile forms.
We can observe these little animals by raising the large leaves of the zucchini plant. It is there that they group into numerous colonies.
Being under the leaves, often unnoticed at first glance, it therefore takes a lot of power of observation to find them before the infestation becomes unmanageable.
Lice damage to zucchini plants
The leaves of the lice infested zucchini plants they have a yellowing of the leaves, which leads, after a short time, to desiccation.
Pests also attack the flowers, which soon wither.
Growing zucchini can also be affected and in that case stop their development.
In general, the affected plants are stunted and sickly.
Harvesting, should there be courgettes to be picked, becomes difficult, as these lice come into contact with the skin.
As indirect damage, zucchini aphids produce large quantities of honeydew, a sugary substance that attracts them ants.
The honeydew causes leaf burns, asphyxiation and, after some time, smokiness, an annoying black patina that smears all the vegetation.
How to prevent zucchini aphids
To prevent courgette lice from transferring to our plants, we can use natural macerates. We are talking about completely natural remedies, such as macerated nettle and the macerated garlic. These compounds must be sprayed on the vegetation and are repellent for parasites, which will prefer to go elsewhere.
If we don't have nettle available to macerate at home, here you will find a macerate ready for use.
Always keep in mind that it is a preventive remedy, therefore, if we notice the presence of aphids too late, it may not be enough.
How to get rid of zucchini aphids
If the infestation of courgette lice is already underway, and therefore the macerated products cannot act, the absolute best product to intervene is the soft potassium soap.
It is a particular soap for agricultural use allowed in organic farming, as it does not leave any type of toxic residue.
The soft soap with potassium salts eliminates insects by asphyxiation, since, acting by contact, it closes the pores from which it breathes. You can find it easily in specialized stores.
The homemade alternative to potassium soap for agriculture is a classic Marseille soap (like these), preferably in flakes, easy to dilute in water.
How to use soft soap
To be successful, wetting with soap must be done carefully. It is necessary to make sure to hit the lice of the zucchini directly, wetting all the vegetation well, especially on the lower wall of the leaves.
To perform the wetting operation in the best possible way, it is therefore necessary to equip yourself with a backpack sprayer (like this one).
Another tip is to wash in the cool hours of the day, so early in the morning or in the evening. This way, you leave the vegetation wet for longer, increasing the chances of getting rid of lice from zucchini plants.
It might also interest you
Organic Cultivation is a blog that was born from our desire to spread the good practices of organic farming. To do this we decided to give our knowledge to anyone who wants to get involved and create their own vegetable garden (even using a terrace or a simple balcony). Growing without the use of pesticides is possible and we want to prove it by presenting alternatives biological and effective for any type of problem linked to agriculture.
Aphids: plant lice
Aphids they are very small insects that often attack garden crops, not for nothing they are also known as plant lice. They nest mainly on the leaves and suck their sap, particularly affecting the more tender parts of the plant.
In nature there are many species of aphids, each selectively attacks only certain types of plants and are distinguished by their different color, from green to black or reddish. They are very annoying for the garden because they often do transmit virosis to plants, they damage some vegetables in particular because by sucking the sap they crumple the leaves, particularly affecting the more tender parts of the plant. The honeydew is also a negative effect of the presence of aphids: a sugary secretion that causes fumaggine, a cryptogam disease.
Defending yourself from aphids is also possible without using chemical pesticides, there are various plant preparations that can help us and which are harmless to humans and the environment. Let's see below how to recognize aphid attacks and the methods to fight them while remaining in the organic cultivation method.
How to remove lice at home
If someone in the house has caught lice, as anticipated, it is not enough to remove them from the head, but one must be done disinfestation throughoutsurrounding environment. Sheets, pillows, sofas, toys must be subjected to careful analysis and cleaning in a very precise way.
Lice, in fact, do not usually jump from head to head (except for prolonged contact between heads!), But they pass much more easily by sharing infested objects and clothing.
We come, therefore, to the lice: how to eliminate them from home environments effectively? THE textiles and everything that can be washed with the washing machine must be washed at 60 ° C. If there are things that cannot be washed, then the best way is to close them in well-sealed plastic bags and leave them like that for two weeks. Head lice cannot live away from the head for more than 72 hours and if there are any eggs they will hatch at this time.
The objects such as washable toys, brushes, accessories, things for the hair but not only, should be left to soak in boiling water with soap for 60 minutes, at least. Don't forget to check all family members, including four-legged ones. All the surfaces at home, to ensure that the unwelcome guest is eliminated, they must be wiped with a steam mop.
The latest in technology applied to hair health is the anti lice comb. This comb uses electric current to instantly electrocute lice. Basically, as soon as the comb encounters one it releases one small electric discharge that strikes the insect.
The discharge is absolutely not perceived by the user as his own power it's a lot low. Although it is not effective with eggs, using it daily can solve the problem. In fact, once the adult lice and those hatched from eggs have been eliminated, the problem will be solved.
Eliminating Head Lice: Symptoms
The symptom more evident than pediculosis is the itch. The presence of eggs confirms that they are present on the scalp lice from remove as soon as possible. The light colored eggs are called nits and are approx 1 mm.
People often don't think about getting rid of lice because they don't realize their presence. In fact, eggs can be mistaken for dandruff and therefore not recognized. In case of doubt there is a simple method to distinguish the eggs lice from dandruff. It is enough indeed blow on the hair. If the white part that looks like dandruff it comes off and flies away then it's just dandruff. Otherwise it is eggs of louse. In fact, the eggs are laid with a sort of very powerful glue at the base of the hair.
In this case we must not waste time, it is necessary get rid of lice as soon as possible. It should be noted, however, that these tiny parasites do not represent a danger to health. Their presence causes only itching and at most dermatitis and therefore they are only annoying. Unfortunately, yes propagate easily from one person to another and that is why they go eliminated as soon as possible.
How to get rid of lice from clothes?
When it comes to lice, caution is never too much and for this reason it is good to wash everything that could be, even potentially, come into contact with "the infested", such as clothing and accessories. Clothes, tank tops, hats, scarves, sweaters, coats, rubber bands and headbands, earmuffs and anything on which eggs can be deposited should be washed at 60 ° C in the washing machine, even 90 ° C when it comes to things that are not they are damaged.
The washing at high temperatures it's a great way for anyone looking for how to get rid of lice naturally. In order not to use chemicals, it is also possible to add a little lemon juice and vinegar to the wash, which have a disinfectant function. In all cases it is good to know that there are also on the market specific products to be used for disinfestation: to put in water, to wash things, to put in bags before sealing them with objects.
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