Saturday, 29 March 2014

Tomato Psyllid

This year we had a bumper tomato crop, I was able to put over 24kg into the freezer to be turned into puree later.  But near the end of the season, we noticed what looked like salt on some leaves, then the leaves began to turn brown and shrivel up.  I blamed it on the dry weather - no rain for a month.  Then one day someone suggested it might be Tomato psyllid.  I looked it up, then inspected the plants:
Completely infested.
So the curly new growth at the start of the season may have been caused by this bug too, and I'm sure they are the reason why my eggplants never thrived.  Psyllids attack the solanum family, so eggplant, capsicum and potato plants are also affected, although the tomatoes and potatoes catch it worst.  I haven't dug any of our potatoes up yet but I'm not too optimistic as the plants have been looking crook for a while.  Many of my later tomatoes were a bit tasteless too - apparently the psyllid sucks the sugar out of the plant, making the fruit a bit of a waste of time.

 Eggplant crop 2014
So I picked all my capsicums, and they've been ripening up nicely in the garage
 They had these wee grey flies all over the leaves, which might be the adult psyllid.
 The good news is that this pest doesn't live in the South Island, which is where we'll be living by next year.

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