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PostPosted: Tue Aug 09, 2011 10:56 am 
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Location: Houston,TX
There is something eating my squash roots, it turns the bottom of the plant into something like mushy sawdust. What can I do to help prevent that happening next year?

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PostPosted: Sun Jun 03, 2012 9:09 am 
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sounds like squash vine borer, spray BT early on and keep on spraying.cut them outof the vine and destroy


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PostPosted: Sun Jun 03, 2012 10:01 am 
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Location: Fort Worth,TEXAS
If you carefully, with a sharp knife, split the stem open on one side lengthwise and find the boring caterpiller, pull it out, and spray BT on the area. It may recover. If the stem is mush all the way through it won't survive.

I tried using a large syringe and injecting water with BT into the plant stem a few years ago, with mixed results. Instead, now if I find a split or weakened stem I use a needle nose pliers and pry the split open a bit and pour water with Garrett Juice, BT, etc over it and let it dribble into the stem. That seems to have worked as well or better on those borers. And I do go back regularly and water with some BT in the water. Be careful not to use BT on the flowers if you can avoid it, it kills butterflies. (You want the butterflies to pollinate, you don't want their larva because they kill your plants. Ironic!)

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PostPosted: Sat Jun 09, 2012 9:11 am 
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This is exactly what is happening to my squash. What is "BT?"


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PostPosted: Sat Jun 09, 2012 11:04 am 
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Bacillus thuringiensis. It kills moth and butterfly caterpillars like cutworms, tobacco hornworm, etc. As they eat something sprayed with it their digestion shuts down, they stop eating, and they die. You need to be careful not to broadcast this or you'll kill butterflies.

Thuricide, Green Light, there are various brands. I keep it in the fridge, you add a little to water you're going to spray. I usually mix some Garrett Juice, some plant wash, and a little molasses along with the BT and do it like foliar feeding. As you see worms or every few weeks if you know you'll have them come along (I get cut worms every year, but I don't spray until I think they're maybe present.)

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