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What is Spinosad, What does it do?

Posted May 21, 2013

 Spinosad is a bacterium, Saccharopolyspora spinosa, that has been on the market since 2003, but was discovered in an old Caribbean rum still in the 80's.  It controls many garden pests safely. Safe for the plants and safe for you as well!  It treats a wide variety of insects like, caterpillars, leafminers, spider mites, fire ants, webworms, beetles, earwigs, fleas and borers!   It is similar to Bt, but works even better because it goes beyond eliminating caterpillars and holds up better and longer in light rains.  Spinosad is especially good for rose gardens, controlling thrips.  Although Spinosad is considered safe for beneficial insects, it should be used in the late evening time when bees are back in their hives.  Be careful not to spray butterfly gardens, as many beneficial caterpillars live among these gardens.

Spinosad works rather quickly, 1-2 days with a residual affect for 5 to 7 days.  After that time frame, Spinosad breaks down by sunlight, making it safe for the environment.  Insects that are exposed to Spinosad become excited to exhaustion, stop eating immediately and die within two days. Captain Jacks Dead Bug Brew with Spinosad

Spinosad comes in dust, liquid or pellet forms making.  Sprays and dusts are best for applying on plants for pests like caterpillars, where as the pellets are best for ants, earwigs or other crawling insects. 

Comments (1 Comment)

I find that the spinosad pellet products have nearly eliminated a severe problem with earwigs and have significantly controlled sow bugs. The spray is quite effective on caterpillars, and some beetles, including flea beetles. As an experiment, this year I sprayed it on the stems of zucchini when planting, and have had no problem with either squash bugs or borers this year for the first time, and have noticed fewer Japanese beetles and even bean beetles, though I wasn’t particularly persistent in spraying last year, not believing it would do any good. Could be a coincidence….

Posted by Laurie on August 30, 2019

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