have had a lot of trouble this year with the green hard back beetle
and mealy bug, which I understand turns into what we call penny
moths. When spraying with Target, does it kill these insects or
does it simply force them to move somewhere else?
beetle you refer to is probably green vegetable bug and the "mealy
bug" sounds like the nymphs (young) of the passion vine hopper.
Both these insects can feed on a wide range of plants. In many cases,
infested plants show little signs of damage, even with quite high
populations of the pests, but some vegetables and passion fruit
vines in particular can suffer quite badly.
If your Target spray
actually hits the bugs before they fly or leap away, there's a high
likelihood they will die. Target also has what is described as "translaminar
activity", which means it travels through the leaf and probably
also into the stems. So for several days after spraying, any insect
that feeds on the plant will also be affected by the spray. This
is why, with edible plants, it is very important to check the withholding
period stated on the Target container label, to ensure you don't
harvest and eat anything that might still contain traces of spray.
Gardener, Issue 196, 2006, Page 39
Reproduced with permission from the former Weekend Gardener magazine. The views expressed here are not necessarily those of the RNZIH.