Arizona Vegetable & Fruit Gardening For The Arizona Desert Environment.
Pictures, Photos, Images
Descriptions, Information, & Reviews.
Vegetable Garden Pests In Arizona.

Vegetable Garden Pests In Arizona. Vegetable & Fruit Gardening For The Arizona Desert Environment. Pictures, Photos, Images, Descriptions,  Information, & Reviews.
Hey! What Is Growing Under This Perfectly Healthy Looking Eggplant Leaf?
At Least It Looked Healthy On The Top Of The Leaf!
See Next Image Below.

Vegetable Garden Pests In Arizona. Vegetable & Fruit Gardening For The Arizona Desert Environment. Pictures, Photos, Images, Descriptions,  Information, & Reviews.Vegetable Garden Pests In Arizona. Vegetable & Fruit Gardening For The Arizona Desert Environment. Pictures, Photos, Images, Descriptions,  Information, & Reviews.
Health Eggplant?
At Least The Top Part Looks Healthy!
Wingless Potato Aphid , Macrosiphum euphorbiae.
Hiding In Eggplant Flower & Under The Leaf In Above Photo!

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Vegetable Garden Pests In Arizona.

Here Are Our Descriptions Of Some Of The More Common Vegetable Garden Pests In Arizona.
No Attempt Here Is Made To Show All Of Them!!
Some Photos & Descriptions Courtesy Of: Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.
We Also Allow Wikipedia To Use Our Material.


Aphid; (Wingless Potato) , Macrosiphum euphorbiae. Under Eggplant Leaf, & Inside Eggplant Flower.

Wingless Potato Aphid , Macrosiphum euphorbiae. Wingless Potato Aphid , Macrosiphum euphorbiae. The Wingless Potato Aphid , Macrosiphum euphorbiae is a sap-sucking pest insect in the family Aphididae. It infests potatoes and a number of other commercially important crops.

The Wingless Potato Aphid originated in North America but it has spread to the temperate parts of Europe and Asia and is found in all areas of the world where potatoes are grown.

The wingless female potato aphid is green or sometimes pink, often with a darker dorsal stripe. It has a pear-shaped body reaching about four millimetres long. longer than the body. The winged female has a uniform darker colored body and appendages and has a green abdomen. The nymphs look like miniature versions of the adults and they go through several moults in the course of about ten days.

The female potato aphids usually overwinter on weeds & they usually emerge in April and begin feeding on perennial weeds, preferring plants in the Chenopodiaceae family. Then in about May or early June, they migrate to potato, cabbage, tomato and others crops where they feed on shoots, the lower side of leaves, buds and flowers, often on the lower parts of the plant. They are highly polyphagous, feeding on over two hundred species in more than twenty plant families, but their preference is for plants in the Solanaceae family.

While in some cases, high temperatures or heavy rainfall may reduce infestations and the numbers are naturally controlled by predators, parasites and pathogens. If numbers of aphids are sufficiently high, chemical control should be attempted using insecticidal soaps or poisons. This is not always effective because the aphids usually congregate on the underside of lower leaves where they are difficult to reach with sprays.

A number of virus diseases are spread by Macrosiphum euphorbiae. These include lettuce mosaic virus, bearded iris mosaic virus, narcissus yellow stripe virus, tulip breaking virus, potato leaf roll virus, potato virus Y, beet mild yellowing virus and beet yellows virus.



Desert Banded Centipede, Scolopendra polymorpha.

Desert Banded Centipede, Scolopendra polymorpha. The Desert Banded Centipede, Scolopendra polymorpha; AKA Common Desert Centipede, or tiger centipede is rather common in the Sonoran Desert and nearby deserts of the southwest and it emerges on warm nights to hunt crickets, termites and other arthropods.

In the sense that he is a preditor of many pests, he should be on my good insect page, but you sure don't want to handle him if you see him in your garden. He is not considered dangerous to humans but he can give you a nasty bite that will hurt for quite a while!

Some of the largest specimens can exceed 100 mm in length!

They are considered among the top predators in the Sonoran Desert invertebrate community. In fact they are not averse to eating other predators such as scorpions, & spiders.



European Corn Borer, Ostrinia nubilalis.

European Corn Borer, Ostrinia nubilalis. European Corn Borer, Ostrinia nubilalis. The European Corn Borer, Ostrinia nubilalis, also known as the European high-flyer, is a pest of grain, such as corn, particularly maize. The insect is native to Europe, originally infesting varieties of millet, including broom corn. But, European corn borer is known to feed on 250 different kinds of plants, some of which include: corn, especially sweet corn, chrysanthemum, dahlia, gladiolus, eggplant, pepper, beet, bean, potato, tomato, oat, soybean, and many kinds of weeds.

The European corn borer was first reported in North America in 1917 in Massachusetts, but was probably introduced from Europe several years earlier. Since its initial discovery in the Americas, the insect has spread into Canada and westward across the United States to the Rocky Mountains. Arizona has a quarantine in effect for this pest.

The larvae, during the borer stage, can vary in length from to 1 inch and have a gray to creamy white color. The larvae eat leaves and tunnel into all parts of the stalks and ears; the major damage to sweet corn is to the ears. The tunneling impairs the growth of the plant and causes the plants to fall over. Biological control agents of corn borers include the hymenopteran parasitoid Trichogramma spp., the fungus Beauveria bassiana and the protoza Nosema pyrausta.

The moths appear in June, and are about one inch long with a one inch wingspan. The female moth is light yellowish-brown with dark, irregular, wavy bands across the wings. The male is slightly smaller and darker in coloration. The tip of its abdomen protrudes beyond its closed wings. The fully-grown larva is three-quarters to one inch in length. This borer is usually flesh-colored, but may range from light gray to faint pink, with conspicuous small, round, brown spots on each segment.

Female corn borer moths lay clusters of eggs on corn leaves, usually on the underside. The egg masses, or clusters, are laid in an overlapping configuration and are whitish-yellow in color. As the larvae develop inside their eggs, the eggs become more and more transparent and the immature caterpillar black heads are eventually visible. The caterpillars hatch by chewing their way out of the eggs.



Green Bird Grasshopper, Schistocerca shoshone.

Green Bird Grasshopper, Schistocerca shoshone. The Green Bird Grasshopper, Schistocerca shoshone, prefers feeding upon various woody plants; the adults stay on an individual host plant for most of the day, they usually remain motionless when not feeding.

This species normally feeds on grasses. The nymphs hatch after a week in soil if it is moist. This species may swarm and cause severe crop damage in some areas. It is also found in Colorado, Texas, and Mexico westward to California.

Green Bird Grasshoppers feed on a variety of plants and can sometimes strip plants in urban settings.



Shield Bugs: (Bordered Plant Bug), Largus succinctus.

Bordered Plant Bug, Largus succinctus

Generally speaking the Bordered Plant Bug Largus succinctus does not cause a problem to fruit or vegetable gardens but, they have been reported to do so when they are present in large numbers. One gardener has reported that "They have eaten corn, tomato, squash and just about anything else. I put a couple blue berries in pots that had blueberries and they ate the fruit".

They are in oak, shrub areas and have been reported to eat from those trees.



Stink Bugs: (Euschistus Stink Bug), Euschistus ictericus.

Euschistus Stink Bug, Euschistus ictericus. Euschistus ictericus is a North American species of shield bug. It lives in damp areas. It is NOT considered a pest to your garden or orchard!

E. ictericus grows to a length of 10.512 millimetres (0.410.47 in), and can be distinguished from other members of the "brown stink bugs" by the lack of black spots in the middle of the ventral side of the abdomen, and by the presence of black rings around the spiracles on the abdomen.



Stink Bugs: (Green Stink Bug), Acrosternum hilare. --- & Eggs

Green Stink Bug, Acrosternum hilare. Green Stink Bug, Acrosternum hilare.

The green stink bug or sometimes called, green soldier bug (Acrosternum hilare) is a stink bug belonging to the family Pentatomidae.

According to Dr. David Rider of North Dakota State University the generic name is wrong. The genus name Acrosternum should be restricted to a handful of Old World, small, pale green species that live in dry arid areas. The larger, brighter green species that live in both the Old and New Worlds should actually go by the generic name Chinavia, therefore this species should be called Chinavia hilaris.

The Green Stink Bug, Acrosternum hilare is found in orchards, gardens, woodlands and crop fields throughout North America, feeding with their needle-like mouthparts on the juices of a wide variety of plants from about May until the arrival of frost. Adults have a preference for eating the developing seeds of plants and thus become crop pests (ie..tomato, bean, pea, cotton, corn, soybean, eggplant). When no seeds are present, they will feed on the stems and foliage, thus damaging several fruit trees, such as the apple, cherry, peach, and orange.

The Green stink bug is typically bright green, with narrow yellow, orange, or reddish edges. It is a large, shield-shaped bug with an elongate, oval form and a length between about 1318 mm. It can be differentiated from the species Nezara by its black outermost three antennal segments. Its anterolateral (= in front and away from the middle) pronotal margin is rather straight and not strongly arced such as in Acrosternum pennsylvanicum.

Both adults and nymphs have large stink glands on the underside of the thorax extending more than half-way to the edge of the metapleuron. They discharge large amounts of this foul-smelling liquid when disturbed.

The females attach their keg-shaped eggs on the underside of foliage in double rows of twelve eggs or more. The early instar nymphs are rather brightly colored and striped, turning green when approaching adulthood.



Squash Bug, Anasa tristis.

Adult. Squash Bug, Anasa tristis. Adults & Nymphs. Squash Bug, Anasa tristis. Eggs. Squash Bug, Anasa tristis.

The Squash Bug, Anasa tristis is a major pest of squashes, pumpkins, zucchinis, watermelons, cucumbers and cantaloupes. Squash bug feeding causes extensive damage to stems resulting in wilting, fruit discoloration and pre/postharvest spoilage.

Squash bugs transmit Cucurbit yellow vine disease now rapidly spreading through the west and Midwest.

There are few effective biological agents or cultural practices for controlling this highly destructive pest aside from insecticides to which the species has evolved resistance.

Use of resistant squash varieties, such as Butternut, Royal Acorn, and Sweet Cheese, Green-striped Cushaw, Pink Banana, and Black Zucchini helps to reduce bug problems. Handpicking and destroying bugs and their egg masses and trapping bugs under small boards placed under or near the vines and then destroying them are two popular control techniques, but they must be practiced with vigilance. The bugs can be destroyed by squashing them or drowning them in a container of soapy water. Egg masses should be crushed or burned. Some organic gardeners suggest interplanting with tansy, catnip, marigolds, bee balm, mint, and nasturtiums. Others suggest spraying with a kaolin clay crop protectant, but the effectiveness of such a treatment is not fully established.

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For additional information, we refer to "Squash Bug". Genetzky, A., E. C. Burkness and W. D. Hutchison, Department of Entomology, University of Minnesota.

For more information, we also refer to "Squash Bug (Anasa tristis)". by Diane G. Alston, Entomologist James V. Barnhill, Weber County Agriculture Agent. Utah State University Extension and Utah Plant Pest Diagnostic Laboratory. For pictures & information of the Squash Bug, Anasa tristis.



Two Spotted Spider Mite, Tetranychus urticae. Individual & Colony.

Two Spotted Spider Mite, Tetranychus urticae. Two Spotted Spider Mite, Tetranychus urticae. Colony. The Tetranychus urticae (common names include red spider mite and twospotted spider mite) is one of many species of plant-feeding mites found in the dry environments across the world, including Arizona, and is generally considered a pest. It is the most widely known member of the family Tetranychidae or spider mites.

TheTetranychus urticae can feed on hundreds of plants, including most vegetables and food crops including peppers, tomatoes, potatoes, beans, corn, strawberries; and ornamentals such as roses.

It lays its eggs on the leaves, and it poses a threat to host plants by sucking cell contents from the leaves cell by cell, leaving tiny pale spots or scars where the green epidermal cells have been destroyed. Although the individual lesions are very small, attack by hundreds or thousands of spider mites can cause thousands of lesions and thus can significantly reduce the photosynthetic capability of plants. This can either weaken or kill the plants.

The spider mite's natural predator, Phytoseiulus persimilis, which is commonly used as a biological control method, is one of the many predatory mites, which prey mainly or exclusively on spider mites.



Wooly Apple Aphid, Erisoma lanigerum. Individual & Colony.

Wooly Apple Aphid, Erisoma lanigerum. Wooly Apple Aphid, Erisoma lanigerum. Root Damage. Woolly aphids (Erisoma lanigerum) are sucking insects that live on plant fluids, and they produce a filamentous waxy white covering which resembles cotton or wool on the plant. The adult aphids are winged and move on to new locations where they lay egg masses. The larvae often form large cottony masses on twigs, for protection from predators. They came to the USA from Japan.

The woolly apple aphid is the best known pest of fruit growers. There are numerous species of woolly aphids and sometimes they have only one host plant species. Often they alternate their generations of aphids on two specific hosts.

In flight they have been described as looking like "flying mice", and are given nicknames like "fluff bugs", "Don King bugs", "fairy flies", "Frederick Douglass flies" or "fuzz-butts". Due to their whimsical appearance, some parents tell children that they carry wishes, live in tulips, and much like fairies, are born every time you make a wish on a dandelion.

Woolly aphids eat by inserting their needle - like mouthparts into plant tissue to withdraw sap. They are able to feed on leaves, buds, bark, and even the roots of the plant. As a result of feeding on the sap, woolly aphids produce a sticky substance known as honeydew, which can lead to sooty mold on the plant.

Generally speaking, woolly aphids aren't much cause for alarm, but they can cause rather unsightly damage to plants, which is particularly a problem for growers of ornamentals. Symptoms of feeding include twisted and curled leaves, yellowed foliage, poor plant growth, low plant vigor, and branch dieback.

Further minor damage can be caused by the honeydew that woolly aphids secrete, which is difficult to remove. While the honeydew itself doesn't cause too much of a problem, the honeydew can cause sooty mold to grow, which can block some of the sunlight needed for photosynthesis.



Vegetable Garden Pests:

In general there are many various pest organisms, primarily arthropods (insects and mites), diseases, weeds, and mammals that are associated with vegetable production and they cause significant economic losses to commercial vegetable growers.

Insect pests found in fruit orchards can be classified into two groups depending upon which plant part is attacked. Direct pests are those insects that feed upon fruits, while indirect pests are those that attack the leaves, trunk, and other parts of the tree.

Examples of direct pests of fruit are apple maggot, plum curculio, codling moth, and other internal fruit feeders.

Pests like spotted tentiform leafminer, aphids, and mites may affect fruit yield if they are present in large numbers, but since they do not directly injure the fruits, they are indirect pests.

Now, just when you think you have that idea in mind, there is another way to look at insect pests. That other idea is that insect pests can also be classified in terms of the seriousness of their infestation and effect on orchard economics.

Under that method there are three groups of pests - Major Pests are those that have the potential to cause major economic losses to the grower. Usually, most direct pests that feed on fruit are also considered major pests. For example, apple maggot, plum curculio, and codling moth constitute the major pests of apples in the upper Midwest, USA.

Indirect Pests usually do not feed on the fruit, and although their activities may limit fruit yield they are only considered minor pests.

A third category of pest insects are the Quarantine Pests . Quarantine pests are insects not known to be established in a given area. The flat scarlet mite and apple ermine moth are current examples of quarantine pests in the State of Minnesota.

It is very difficult to grow peaches or nectarines in the home garden without an effective pest control program. Common insects and mites affecting peaches and nectarines include tarnished plant bug, stink bug, oriental fruit moth, plum curculio, peach tree borers, Japanese beetle, green June beetle and European red mite.

There are many sources of information about fruit pests and diseases. We often refer to GreenShare Factsheets from the Cooperative Extension Education Center, College of the Environment and Life Sciences University of Rhode Island, Kingston, Rhode Island on these specific pests and diseases for more information and control recommendations.

There are many sources of information about fruit pests and diseases. We often refer to Common Tree Fruit Insects from the Michigan State University Extension, East Lansing, MI. For pictures of specific fruit tree pests & for more information and control recommendations.

For Arizona fruit tree pests, we refer to "Common Fruit Tree Pests". from the Cooperative Extension, The University of Arizona, College of Agriculture & Life Sciences. For information about specific fruit tree pests in Arizona.

For Arizona fruit tree pests, we also refer to "Common Pests of Fruit Trees". by Jim Walgenbach, Extension Entomologist, from the Mountain Horticultural Crops Research and Extension Center of North Carolina. For pictures of specific fruit tree pests.

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Fruit Tree Diseases; General Comments:

Many diseases of apple are not restricted to one part of the tree. For example, apple scab attacks the fruit, leaves, and flowers. Powdery mildew can also infect many parts of the tree. Fire blight is a tree disease infecting leaves, shoots, limbs, and trunk, but it can infect fruit and root stock. The fungal disease complex known as sooty blotch and flyspeck is, however, restricted to the fruit.

Common peach and nectarine diseases are peach leaf curl, brown rot, scab, bacterial spot and powdery mildew.

There are many sources of information about fruit pests and diseases. We often refer to GreenShare Factsheets from the Cooperative Extension Education Center, College of the Environment and Life Sciences University of Rhode Island, Kingston, Rhode Island on these specific pests and diseases for more information and control recommendations.


Beneficial Insects:

Not all insects found in an fruit orchard or vegetable garden are pests. Many organisms benefit the grower by eating or parasitizing pests in the orchard or garden. These organisms are known as beneficials, natural enemies, or biological control agents. They may be native or introduced from other areas.

Beneficial natural enemies (insects and mites) that may occur in an orchard or garden could be classified as predators or parasitoids. Predators are those that attack, kill, and feed directly on a pest (prey). Examples of common orchard or garden predators are ladybeetles, flies, lacewings, wasps, bugs, ants, spiders, and predator mites. Parasitoids are insects that lay eggs on or in a pest (host). The developing larva lives and feeds on the host, parasitizing and eventually killing it. Examples include parasitic wasps such as the egg parasite, Trichogramma sp.

Bees are a different class of beneficial insects in the orchard or garden in that they benefit the grower by aiding pollination.

It is important that growers are able to recognize, identify, and conserve beneficials in their orchard or garden. Conservation of beneficial organisms is a basic tenet of an ecologically sound pest management strategy. Conservation or enhancement of beneficials can be achieved through judicious use of pesticides such as spraying 1. only when and where needed, 2. accurate timing of sprays, and 3. selecting pesticides that are least toxic to beneficials.

For Example: Many growers now place colonies of the Blue Orchard Mason bees in their orchards or gardens to pollinate their crops for maximum production.


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