Every Saturday, after a day at market, I look forward to the evening when I go out into the fields to soak in the beautiful sunset glow at the time of day when anything I do on the farm is pleasurable. This evening I had the intentions of weeding the burdock bed but I noticed the squash wasn’t looking so peppy. Sure enough the squash bugs had found them! I had just finished reading an article on squash and squash bugs in an older edition of Mother Earth News.
Basically, it was saying that as soon as you put baby squash in a squash bug will find it and call commando on the troups to come devour it! Last year these same evil bugs totally wiped out our kabocha squash. I was determined to get them early this year! So I got a bucket of soapy water and turned over every leaf to find squash bugs and their eggs. I spent a good hour or so exterminating them. Is it strange to say that I enjoy squashing those bugs?
Growing vegetables organically without pesticides or herbicides is a challenge when the temperatures rise and we enter summer. Of course, crop rotation, companion planting and attracting beneficial animals and insects help greatly but the best way to combat bugs or weeds is to hand pick them.
Thanks to Debbie Roos our fabulous Chatham County Extension Agent and her website growing small farms, you can check out her pictures of both good and evil bugs and learn how to deal with them.