Jump to content

Root Aphids


PsyCLown
 Share

Recommended Posts

Hey all,

 

So I recently noticed I have a bit of a problem... Yipp, found some root aphids on my cutting. 😢

 

A bit of research and it seems I am in for a bit of hell trying to get rid of them.

Starting this post to see if there is perhaps something I have missed or to possibly help someone else in future who ends up with these pests.

 

Firstly, root aphids are not easy to notice as they attach to the roots and generally we do not see the roots of our plants very often as they're covered by the medium we grow in. So noticing you have a problem can often be the first problem - the quicker you can start taking action the better.

Root aphids seem to take multiple shape, one of their forms include wings and inside your tent they can appear to look like fungus gnats flying around. So if you think you have fungus gnats but they just aren't dieing like you

re used to, it may be root aphids!

 

So now on to how to get rid of them - well, I am busy trying to figure this out for myself.

Also part of the reason I created this thread, perhaps I can get some advice from you fellow growers.

Natural remedies are pretty much out of the question. Since they live in the medium (coco / soil), foliar sprays are rather useless unless they are systemic sprays and most of the time those can be problematic. Not all are safe to spray on cannabis crops or edible crops.

 

So a bit of research points to the following:

  • Soil drench of Pyrethrum / pyrethrins / pyrethroids (Like Pyrol, Xterminator and many other products) - this can be hard on the plants and burn them. This is a contact killer generally and will not wipe out the entire lot of root aphids but should reduce the population heavily... if you are willing to risk your plants.
  • Soil drench of Azadirachtin (Bio-Neem) - A good weapon to have and use it seems, will help stop them from growing and shedding and some may not eat either. So can help reduce the colony and kill off majority of them over a few days and help stop them from shedding and growing and from eating. Will not kill all of them.
  • Beauveria bassiana (Bio-Insek) - Seems to be a very good option. This is a fungus, you receive this product as spores (either in powder form or in a pre-mixed liquid). Typically it is used as a foliar spray but will need to be used as a soil drench in this application to try get it into the medium and onto the root aphids where they will hopefully get infected and infect the others and possibly kill the entire colony over a period of time. Works well when used in combination with Bio-Neem.
  • Metarhizium 62 - This is also a fungus, one which lives in soil and targets certain types of insects (this specific one targets aphids). It will kill the insects on contact, however trying to source some locally is a bit of an issue - I have reached out to Real IPM to see if they can assist. Used in combination with Beauveria bassiana, will hopefully kill all of them within a few weeks.
  • Acephate (Orthene) - Systemic and debatable as to how safe it is to use on cannabis. Often used on edible crops and tobacco though.
  • Imidacloprid - Systemic and has a very very long half life in water without light (1 to 3 years). General consensus is that it is not safe to use on cannabis crops, although once again a bit of debate around this. Some seem to suggest it would be safe to use on mother plants and consume (eat & smoke) the bud from cuttings taken from the mother plant, after Imidacloprid has been given to the mother. Really not something I am comfortable risking. Seems to be a sure way of getting rid of the root aphids one time and majority of other pests you may have.

 

So going to be trying some Beauveria bassiana and neem as my initial try at getting rid of these root aphids failed unfortunately. It makes life a bit easier that I have a rooted cutting with the aphids on, so I can try on there and monitor and see if it works and how well it works. A control of sorts.

 

I am not sure where I got it from, everyone I received cuttings from has checked and does not have root aphids. The plugs were new and from GTH but the packaging was damaged so it is a possibility but cannot confirm it.
Could have just been from the garden and they walked in, who knows...

 

If anyone has tried and tested methods or something I have missed, I am all ears! 😄 

  • Like 2
  • Wow 1
  • Sad 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'd off the top of my head, say a soil drench with Neem and then hit the room, tent, floor and possibly even the roots you can get to or see, with peroxide (soil drench too) and then follow with KHC03. 

Might not be the best or even work, but what my mind is thinking without any research. 

Edited by The_StonedTrooper
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hydrogen Peroxide only kills the larvae and you gotta leave it and let the medium sit in it for a while.

Not an ideal solution and quite risky getting the concentration just right to kill them and not damage the plants, will kill anything else in the medium too.

 

Nematodes are also a possibility, works well in combination with Beavaria Bassania to help spread it apparently. Finding the right nematodes locally is probably not easy and not a solution to eradicate them either.

 

Oh, Eco Insect Control by Effekto is what I tried initially but so far does not seem to be killing them on contact but did a drench of it and will continue to monitor. Works well with Beauveria bassiana though so hopefully a combination of the 3 (bio-neem too) will help me get rid of them.

 

Otherwise, then I need to look towards Plan B...

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Diatomaceous earth is just going to stop them from coming to the surface, also when wet it's kak.

I actually tried some of that Margaret Roberts stuff for fungus gnats but doesn't make a difference, thought I did have fungus gnats initially.

I believe Cinnamon kills fungus and I'm planning on using fungus to help kill these root aphids, so not going to risk it.

Sent from my Redmi Note 7 Pro using Tapatalk



  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

45 minutes ago, PsyCLown said:

Diatomaceous earth is just going to stop them from coming to the surface, also when wet it's kak.

I actually tried some of that Margaret Roberts stuff for fungus gnats but doesn't make a difference, thought I did have fungus gnats initially.

I believe Cinnamon kills fungus and I'm planning on using fungus to help kill these root aphids, so not going to risk it.

Conundrum 🤔

Link to comment
Share on other sites

So I spoke to two people today - guy from Real IPM and Jamie from Jamies Garden Shop, went into quite a bit of detail with the guy from Real IPM.

However both seemed to think along the same route as what I was thinking - soil drench is a must and a combination of Bio-Insek (Beavaria Bassiana & Metarhizium) along with some Bio-Neem would work well.

 

Metarhizium - not sure which strain and whether this strain attacks aphids, Real IPM have a strain of Met which is specific for Aphids but quite pricey at around R1600 for 1L which is the smallest quantity. Lasts upto 12 months in a fridge only.

Once again, different strains of Beavaria Bassiana exist and whether these strains target aphids is another question but worth a shot and bio-neem is a good idea to help keep the root aphids under control for a while and help knock the population down a bit.

 

Frequent soil drenches will be required. This is not going to be cheap to treat. Should get my stuff tomorrow hopefully.

  • Like 1
  • Thanks 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 7/19/2021 at 8:58 PM, CreX said:

Perhaps a too low a dose was used

I got rid of worms and larvae in my Coco by mixing 1.5 ml eco insect control and alternating the drench with bio neem at 2 ml. I adjusted the pH to 6 for improved efficacy.

When you use these liquids as on the soil they are absorbed by the roots and act as systemic pesticides. I rotated the drenches for 3 weeks and eliminated the issue. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

52 minutes ago, Twix Aphen said:

I got rid of worms and larvae in my Coco by mixing 1.5 ml eco insect control and alternating the drench with bio neem at 2 ml. I adjusted the pH to 6 for improved efficacy.

When you use these liquids as on the soil they are absorbed by the roots and act as systemic pesticides. I rotated the drenches for 3 weeks and eliminated the issue. 

Eco Insect Control is pretty good stuff, however pests can develop resistance to it quite easily and quickly so best not to use it too often.

A combination of pesticides I feel is often best and try wipe them all out as quickly as possible to prevent resistance and the resistant pest becoming dominant and being more of an issue to get rid of.

 

I have heard mixed things about Spinosad and neem being systemic, systemic pesticides certainly are appealing as it makes life easier - especially if you miss a patch on a leaf etc.

1.5ml seems to be on the higher side, looking at it for big applications for farms and such the dosages recommended for a more concentrated versio nof the product worked back to 0.6ml per L for soil drench and 1.2ml per L for foliar and I applied it accordingly for a soil drench. Less than half the dose you used though, perhaps upping it would yield better results. It does not seem to be harsh on the plants at all though.

 

Received my goodies, will apply them tonight. 😄 

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

@PsyCLownI think the instructions from efekto says 12 ml to 10 L for drenching lawns, I had a big problem in my pots so I went with 15 ml in 10 litres and it worked. Its a long time since I used any spinosad, I stopped caring about the fungus gnat larvae and worms, when I moved back from hydro to soil.

I rotate all pesticides to avoid the bugs building any resistance and bio neem works well without causing any plant stress. Good luck , I hope you solve it soon.

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

The issue is, I will then need multiple bottles of the Eco Insect Control to make enough as a soil drench for my plants as I give my plants the same amount as if it is a normal feed for them to ensure the coco gets fully drenched.

 

Anyways, I did apply the BioNeem, BioInsek and some other stuff to help the fungus and plants out last night as a soil drench. I just hope it works, may place another order for more Bio Insek too and do another drench next week... Perhaps get another bottle or 2 of the Eco Insect Control and do another drench at higher strength - perhaps go for less L per pot this time around as the BioNeem won't last for another soil drench as I did last night.

 

I did check the cuttings though and there seemed to be fewer root aphids on the roots from what I could see and tell and the cuttings looked a lot happier (root wise).

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 7/23/2021 at 8:40 AM, PsyCLown said:

I give my plants the same amount as if it is a normal feed for them to ensure the coco gets fully drenched

Good day,  I sprayed all over the surface of the coco and then let the nutes wash it through into the gutter. I did it every 3 days or so, when the lights went on, just before the irrigation cycle started. It took 10 litres to dose the whole tent (2.4 x 2.4). I think I used 3 x 50 ml bottles over the duration.

Not many countries allow spinosad to be sold over the counter and in California it's on the banned list for cannabis. The efekto pamphlet only recommended a drench for lawns, to kill caterpillars. These aphids have got a waxy shield that protects them so I used the highest dosage recommend. 

According to Cloyd, “Root aphids may hide under the root ball thus allowing them to escape exposure to any insecticide residues. Systemic insecticides may not be effective against root aphids as insufficient (non-lethal) concentrations of the active ingredient may not accumulate in the roots where they are feeding.”

I've spoken to another grower about this problem and their solution was to remove any effected plants and destroy them. Then in the remaining plants, use an aphicide that he applied once a week, until he was sure they didn't return. He used a neo nicotinoid which is something I personally think should be banned 🚫

 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...