The average home vegetable garden contains more than a dozen different vegetables, and each is attacked by several different insect pests. Insects can damage vegetables in several ways. Some pests, such as cutworms and squash vine borers, attack and kill entire plants. Other pests, like tomato fruitworms, stink bugs, and cowpea curculios, go directly for the fruit. Pests such as aphids and whiteflies cause indirect damage by sucking sap from the leaves, and many insect pests transmit plant diseases.
See Publication 2347, Insect Pests of the Home Vegetable Garden, for information on the identification, management, and control of the most common insect pests in Mississippi gardens. This publication also contains information on the best insecticides for home vegetable gardens and tips on how to apply insecticides. Publication 2347 also contains information on organic insect control. For more detailed information on non-insecticidal management methods see Organic Insect Control for Commercial Vegetable Production. Although this publication is written for commercial producers, many of the non-insecticidal management methods discussed also apply to home gardens.
Fire Ants in Home Vegetable Gardens
Organic Fire Ant Control
Tomato Fruitworm, Bug-Wise Newsletter, No. 8, 2005
Squash Vine Borer, Bug-Wise Newsletter, No. 7, 2004 (Page 2)
Hornworms on Tomatoes, Bug-Wise Newsletter, No. 9, 2004
Insect Pests in Late-season Vegetable Gardens, Bug-Wise Newsletter No. 6 of 2012
Stink Bugs in Home Vegetable Gardens, Bug-Wise Newsletter No. 7 of 2011
Pyrethrum, Pyrethrins, Pyrethroids, Permethrin, What’s the Difference? Bug-Wise Newsletter No. 4 of 2010
Insecticides for the Home Vegetable Garden, Bug-Wise Newsletter No. 8 of 2009
Whiteflies on Home Vegetables and Landscape Plants, Bug-Wise Newsletter No. 8 of 2008
Spider Mites, Bug-Wise Newsletter No. 5 of 2007
Butterflies aren’t just beautiful. They are important pollinators for wildflowers and woody plants. But before they transform into the colorful, winged adults you see fluttering around your landscape, they are caterpillars hatched from eggs. Mississippi is home to more than 50 species of butterflies. Have you seen any of these three common butterfly caterpillars in your yard?
If you have a home garden, you know the headache of dealing with garden pests. Insects can damage the produce, both directly and indirectly. There are a multitude of different insects that can wreak havoc on your vegetables. We asked MSU Extension Entomology Specialist Blake Layton what are the five most common insects he sees in gardens. Here’s his list:
Do you have fire ants in your vegetable garden? Me too. Good news for all of us! There are some fire ant baits that are safe to use around food plants.
Spring and summer bring out the insects in Mississippi lawns and gardens, but fall has its own share of pests that attack cool-season vegetables.
The 2020 Fall Flower & Garden Fest will be a virtual, educational event this year.