Aphids are yellowish-pink to pale green plant lice that suck… plant juices that is. They are a soft-bodied, oval/pear shaped insects and are commonly found on nearly all varieties of plants, vegetables, field crops, and fruit trees.
They range in size from 1/50 to 1/4 inch, Some are winged, some are not.
Early detection is the key to reducing aphid infestations.
The flight of winged colonizers cannot be predicted, so frequent examination of plants will help to determine the need for control.
Watch for buildup of colonies of aphids on the undersides of the leaves. Also look for the appearance of Sooty Mold or Honey Dew buildup anywhere in the vicinity of your Yard or Garden. Aphids as well as mealy bugs, whitefly, and several other sap sucking insects produce a sugary liquid waste called honeydew.
An interesting note about aphids is that they are actually “farmed” by Ants , who will often protect them in much the same way a rancher will protect his livestock from wild predators.
If you have an ant and aphid problem be advised that the ants will often attack predator insects such as lady bugs, so you will need to control both the ants and aphids.
Ants will carry aphids into trees and consume ripening fruits. This can be prevented by applying a band of sticky material around the trunk. A commercial preparation sold under the trade name of Tangle Foot Pest Barrier, which is particularly effective.
Herbal Deterrents for Aphids include Nasturtiums, Basil, Wormwood, Spearmint, Southernwood, Pyrethrum/Chrysanthemums, Onions, Stinging Nettle and Garlic.
Neem is a botanical insecticide with low toxicity ratings that offers a broad range of insect control. The active ingredient Azadirachtin is extracted from the seeds of the Neem trees of southern Asia, Africa, and Australia.
Predatory Insects of Aphids are Lady Bugs and Green Lacewings.