26 May 2012

Soapy Aphids

The year 2012 in Garden 65 seems to be the year of the aphid. They have colonised the euphorbias and have set up outlier camps on the rose buds. Meanwhile the ladybirds are contenting themselves with looking pretty in a less war torn part of the garden. It almost makes you welcome the army of harlequin ladybirds that is apparently marching its way up the country.

This morning, fed up with jeering taunts from farmer ants, I resorted to the old ‘washing up liquid in a spray bottle’ manoeuvre and gave them a good dousing.

How successful this technique will be is debateable. Perhaps the same effect could be achieved by spraying with water alone, but there is one advantage to using soap – rubbing the greenfly off soft leaves with soapy fingers is quite a sensuous experience. Gives a whole new light to those old gardeners like Mr McGregor.

As an aside: the aphid on my middle finger seems to have been caught giving birth to one her nymphs.