We call it the “Battle of the Squash Bug”.
Last year we had scorching heat and no rain for months. Our poor garden was withered and stunted despite the many hours we spent trying to keep it watered and alive.
We spent so much time watering that we had no time for insect control.
Weak and stressed plants attract varmints and one by one we watched our beloved squashes die. Butternut, spaghetti, acorn, even the prolific zucchini fell to the onslaught of the squash bug.
We retreated in defeat to focus on saving what we could in the rest of the garden. That, my friends, was a tactical error.
While we turned our attention to the tomatoes and corn and beans, those pesky varmints organized. They amassed thousands of new troops that quietly took cover over the winter.
And there they waited patiently for the first tender squash leaves of the season.
But this time – we were waiting, too.
Never again will we give up in defeat.
We are determined to be victorious this season!
We started with gloves and a bucket of rubbing alcohol, shuddering every time we plucked a bug and tossed him in the bucket to die. Hundreds, nay thousands died in that deadly chemical bath.
But it wasn’t enough – still they kept coming.
We painstakingly scraped the eggs off of the leaves and into the rubbing alcohol, and stamped out thousands of tiny blue nymphs, making this a battle that spans generations!
We plucked, we stepped on, we scraped. Yet the battle rages on.
Now – we’re in hand-to-hand combat.
Buddy and I pick them and squish them in our bare hands, relishing the stink of a dead squash bug.
Our focus is keen. Our passion is firm. Our cry is strong.
“Give me zucchini and give them death!”