On hyacinth bean vine
Location: Houston, TX
May 14, 2011 10:22 am
It’s May, and almost overnight, these bugs have taken over my hyacinth bean vines. Who are these guys and can you convince me that I should love them?
You (more correctly, your hyacinth bean) have Aphids. Since the female Aphid gives live parthenogenic birth to female clones, Aphids can reproduce in prodigious numbers at an expedited rate. One Aphid seems to become thousands in a rapid period of time. We have no fondness for Aphids which infest plants sucking their nutritious juices and potentially spreading pathogenic viruses to the plants. Since your hyacinth bean is a potential food plant, we do not recommend pesticides, and we personally limit the use of pesticides since they do not discriminate between beneficial and injurious species. A strong jet of water from the hose should knock off the Aphids and they can then become prey to various spiders and other creatures once they have been knocked off the food plant. You can also try to encourage insects like Lacewings and Lady Beetles as they both relish Aphids as food.