This African butterfly has come to stay in the Iberian Peninsula and in other countries in the Mediterranean Sea area. This pest affects most geraniums during their flowering season, so it is vital that you have everything you need to combat them in time. Although it is true that commercial insecticides are very effective against this plague, at EcologíaVerde we continue to use home remedies for the geranium butterfly. if you wonder how to get rid of geranium butterfly and prevent a plague, read on.
Geranium Butterfly Symptoms on Your Plants
The best way to start fighting this increasingly widespread pest is to learn to observe the first symptoms of geranium butterflies on your plants. This pest is very violent and it is possible that, if you are not aware of the plant, it will end up causing its death.
The first thing is to know that it is possible to anticipate this silent plague looking carefully at the flowers which is where butterflies lay their eggs. The larvae will feed on the cocoon, then continue devouring the plant from the inside of the stems.
Therefore, it is recommended, especially once spring arrives when temperatures rise, to start closely observing the plant to check that it is still free of pests. Its rapid reproduction should be taken into account, since the geranium butterfly can make 5 to 6 generations during these months of good weather.
A simple way is to look closely at the flower stems where, if they have been colonized, you will find some small hole where the eggs were introduced, hence the geranium butterfly is also known by the names of geranium borer or geranium borer. In some cases, they can even eat the leaves as well.
Likewise, you can also recognize this pest if:
- plant in poor condition little flowering and weakened.
- flower buds of Dark color and without petals.
- butterfly droppings on stems and leaves.
- Brown or grayish butterflies fluttering near your geraniums.
Specific insecticide against the geranium butterfly
These can be used both to prevent the appearance of the geranium butterfly and to combat it. The most common and effective way of use is to spray the geranium anti-drilling product on the leaves and stems every 15 days from early spring, even between the end of February and the beginning of March, and continue with the treatment until the beginning of October. Do not forget to ask the gardening professionals of your usual store before deciding on a specific brand of this product.
Homemade insecticide for geraniums
Although commercial insecticides give good results, we want you to learn about other alternatives. As you know, at EcologíaVerde we always choose to learn to use the tools that the environment offers us to combat and strengthen your plants.
A simple way to make a homemade insecticide is to make a garlic infusion with which spray the entire plant every 15 days. Simply chop and grind several garlic cloves, add water and bring everything to a boil. It is also possible place a clove of garlic on the root of the geranium to help the plant fight the pest. Thanks to this natural treatment for the geranium butterfly you will be able to prevent its appearance and combat it if you have been able to locate it in time.
As with the garlic infusion, we can use the Neem oil to combat geranium borer. The best way is spray it all over the plant and, in case of severe attack, include a little of it in the irrigation so that it strengthens the plant even more. We recommend that you carry out the treatment during the low sunlight hours since Neem oil loses many of its properties due to exposure to the sun, in addition to causing possible burns on the stems and leaves sprayed with the product.
Similarly, use organic insecticide approximately every 15 days for several months. You may not get immediate results, but with dedication you will not only improve the quality of life of your affected plants, but also prevent the plague from spreading.
Here you can learn much more about the treatment with neem oil and potassium soap for plants: how to do it and use it.
How to prevent the geranium butterfly
When it comes to preventing the appearance of this plague that has been so widespread in recent years, you should start by inspecting the specimen you acquire. Remember that it may already be infested no matter where it came from. Observe in detail and thoroughly leaves, buds and stems of the plant.
Take care of your plant to keep it always strong using a good substrate, an adequate amount of irrigation and, if necessary, add a little natural fertilizer to further promote its growth. In this other guide you can learn about geranium care or you can watch our video below.
You can also use any of the natural treatments that we have taught you as a method of prevention against the appearance of this annoying plague. And if you think there is a lot of risk, include a little anti-drill insecticide in the irrigation dose to reinforce the treatment.
We also recommend reading this other guide about geranium pests and diseases to get to know them better and to be able to take good care of your geranium plants.
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