How can I control squash bugs?


How can I control squash bugs?


Squash bugs can be serious pests of summer and winter squash.  Squash bugs have piercing-sucking mouthparts.  Heavy feeding causes entire leaves to wilt, turn brown, and die.  Several methods can be used to control squash bugs in the garden.  Brick red egg masses on the undersides of leaves and squash bug adults can be removed by hand.  Adults can also be trapped under boards or shingles placed under the plants.  Turn the objects over daily and collect and destroy the hiding squash bugs.  Small, immature squash bugs (nymphs) can be controlled with insecticides, such as Sevin, permethrin, or insecticidal soap.  Sprays are generally more effective than dusts.  If the squash plants are blooming, spray in the evening after the honey bees have quit foraging for the day.  In fall, remove and destroy garden plant debris to deprive squash bugs of overwintering sites.  


Links to this article are strongly encouraged, and this article may be republished without further permission if published as written and if credit is given to the author, Horticulture and Home Pest News, and Iowa State University Extension and Outreach. If this article is to be used in any other manner, permission from the author is required. This article was originally published on . The information contained within may not be the most current and accurate depending on when it is accessed.