What are Aphids?
Aphids are a major pest underglass - they are all similar in appearance although they vary greatly in colour, but are most commonly green or black. They are small with long spindly legs and antennae. During the summer they are wingless as they feed on the plant, but as the population increases winged forms appear which help to spread the infection.
Aphids feed by sucking the sap from the plant, this stunts the growth and causes distortion of the growing point. The aphid absorbs large quantities of plant sap and this sap contains excess sugar that the aphid excretes as honeydew. This is sticky and coats the lower leaves of your plants and often a sooty mould will develops on the honeydew, which is unsightly and reduces the plants ability to manufacture food causing further loss of vigor. Aphids are fast breeders - each female is capable of producing 6-8 live young daily over a 2/3 week period. Importing just one aphid on a plant can quickly lead to severe infestation. It is essential to check all plants brought into the greenhouse or conservatory for signs of aphids and deal with them immediately. In summer winged females will come in through greenhouse vents, so during warm weather be extra vigilant.
Control aphids naturally by introducing Aphidius as soon as aphids are present at the daytime temp is 10c.
How do I control Aphids with aphidius?
To control aphids naturally introduce aphidius as soon as aphids are present and the average temperature is 10C/50F.
This naturally occurring aphid parasite is capable of attacking a wide range of aphid species. N.B. If you have recently used a chemical spray i.e. within the last 2-3 weeks, please contact us to check how soon Aphidius can be introduced?
Aphidius is supplied in small tubes, which are opened in the greenhouse / conservatory and the small Aphidius will fly out and search out the aphids.
Once the Aphidius finds an aphid, it lays an egg in the aphid. As the egg hatches the resulting larvae feeds on the inside of the aphid destroying it. Following pupation, the adult leaves the dead aphid and will then search out its own aphids to infect.
As the aphidius population increases the aphids will be controlled. As well as directly controlling the aphids, the activities of aphidius "upset" the aphid colonies and as a result they produce a warning pheromone which alerts the whole population, which try to escape.
Introduce Aphidius as soon as aphids are present and the average temperature is 10C/50F.
Many fall to the ground and die helping the parasite control aphid numbers.