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Question: 842-2616
How can I get rid of aphids on my ash tree? John, Las Vegas, NV

Mort's Answer:
You should check for Emerald Ash borer first. if there are any cracks in the bark, scrape out the area for sawdust. When a tree is attacked by a pathogen, chances are that they are vulnerable to other infestations. If your tree is less than ten feet, you could use a pump spray mix of old tobacco and micronized sulphur for the aphids. Follow directions on the package for the sulphur. One old cigar butt per gallon will suffice. You will need a licensed arborist for a larger tree or if you have the borer.

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Question: 1351-2616
It looks like I have thousands of black aphids on my lupines. I do not want to harm the flowers but get rid of the bugs. Jim, Gardner, MA

Mort's Answer:
Aphids are about an eighth of an inch. There are 4,000 specie of black, red, brown, white and green aphids. Some specie will change color to the match their host plants. Many carry plant viruses and they can suck the life out of a plant. Insecticidal soap can be effective. We can no longer buy nicotine sulphate, which was deadly to insects, as well as humans. You can make a concoction of tobacco and sulphur and liquid soap to spray on the plants. You may have to repeat after a rain storm. There are a few neonicotinoids that are available for sale that well kill the little aphids or any other sucking or chewing insect.

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