Fresh cucumbers growing in the garden
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The Simple Method For Keeping Cucumber Beetles Out Of Your Garden
Cucumber beetles are small insects that damage and spread diseases to cucurbit plants like cucumbers, watermelons, squash, and pumpkins, but you can prevent and control them.
By inspecting your cucurbit plants regularly for cucumber beetles or signs of their activity, you can identify any problem and address it before it gets out of hand.
Once found, these beetles can be handpicked out of your plants and destroyed or vacuumed out. You can also carefully apply targeted pesticides.
Regularly maintain your garden by cleaning up debris and weeds so they don't serve as hiding spots and breeding grounds for cucumber beetles.
You can surround the plant with a thick layer of mulch so that the beetles can't lay eggs. Use lightweight row covers on the ground beneath your plant to block their access.
Interplant the cucurbits with repellent companions like radishes or plants with strong scents like marigolds, making it harder for the beetles to find your cucurbit plants.
Rotate crops each season to disrupt the life cycle of cucumber beetles, and plant cucumber varieties that mature early in the season to avoid the beetles when they're most active.
Try attracting the cucumber beetles' natural predators, such as ladybugs and ground beetles, by planting flat-topped flowers like fennel and dill.
You can also plant a 'trap crop' before planting more prized cucurbits. The sacrificial trap crop will attract the beetles, making it easy for you to destroy them all at once.