I went out to my garden this morning and all I could see was my squash leaves dying. I’ve been noticing brown spots on the leaves of the Tahitian Melon Squash for a while. Today more leaves were brown and curled. I wasn’t sure what was going on but today I needed to do something about it. Last year I didn’t have any problems like this. I read that Tahitian Melon Squash were very hardy and resistant to most pests. So I think I have been in denial that there was some problem with my squash!
Squash Leaves Dying!
I hadn’t been following my own advice – to get the squash bug eggs before they hatch! Now with my squash leaves dying, I started to examine what was going on. I looked under one of the leaves. I was absolutely horrified to see bunches of baby squash bugs crawling around. There were so many I couldn’t believe it! No wonder my squash leaves were dying! So I started checking under every leaf that was damaged and that I could easily reach. These squash plants cover a lot of area without much room to step between the vines.
I found every stage of squash bug except for any adults. They had already done their damage by laying all the eggs. I also found batches of eggs on the underside of the leaves. I clipped off each affected leaf while folding it up into a ball to contain the bugs so they couldn’t escape. Some escapees I had to squish–believe me they don’t smell that good. I put all these balled up leaves into a plastic bag and tied it into a knot. Later I put this bag into the trash.
I’m sure I didn’t get all of them. But now, at least, I know to look out for them. So each day I will be checking under the leaves for these bugs. I definitely have learned from my mistake–check your squash for squash bug eggs before they hatch! And before you see your squash leaves dying! For more information on squash bugs check out this Colorado State University Extension page.