Listen to scriptListen to script

1402
Aphids

Winged aphid adult Wingless aphid adultAphid eggs on leaf

Aphids can be serious pests in Colorado. The small, pear-shaped insects vary in color from green to orange, red, brown or gray. These insects damage plants by sucking the plant juices. When abundant, aphids remove large quantities of sap, reducing the growth and vigor of the plant.

Injury to foliage

One can look for certain signs on a plant to verify the presence of aphids. Leaf curling, the presence of ants or the excretion of a sweet, honeydew-like substance may all be an indication of an aphid problem.

Aphid on stem

Ladybugs, green lacewings, syrphid flies and parasitic wasps are some of the aphids' natural enemies and will help control them. Most plants will tolerate the use of insecticidal soaps. Test spray a small portion of the plant. Wait a few days and see if there is sensitivity to the foliage. If no symptoms appear then spray the entire foliage. High water pressure may also wash away aphids and remove sticky honeydew.

When aphids can't be controlled by these natural methods, insecticides like acephate, bifenthrin, and imidacloprid are effective. Be sure to follow all label directions when using insecticides.

For more information, see the following Colorado State University Extension fact sheet(s).


Tell us what you think!

Do you have a question? Try Ask an Expert!

Updated Monday, July 21, 2014