Red spider mites?

I've got 'em. How do I get rid of them without hurting any plants? I've read about introducing other predator mites but it said that could take 5 years or so to "get them in balance". I don't want balance, I want those little suckers gone. They're all over the house siding, sidewalks, etc.
--
Steve

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When I had that bad of an infestation on my chickens, (they could have rapidly bled the hens to death!), I used 5% sevin.
I prefer organic means most of the time but sometimes there is not time for that.
At lease sevin biodegrades rapidly.
You could try Pyrethrine too.
--
Peace, Om

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Omelet wrote:

Thanks, I forwarded your reply to my reader. :-D
I just got back from the local garden place and they gave me some stuff called K+neem (never heard of it). It's an organic insecticide/fungicide that you spray on.
It says the active ingredient is Potassium Salds of Fatty Acids derived from Neem seed oil. What ever the h*ll that is.
If this doesn't work I'll research sevin, thanks.
--
Steve

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Oh I've heard good things about Neem! You should hopefully be good to go with that. I'd just forgotten about it as it's hard to find around here.

Good luck! :-) I know how bad a serious break out of those things can be. Tiny as they are, they can make a solid red sheet and number in the millions!
--
Peace, Om

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Talk about getting blind-sided. I would never have thought of earthworms as a problem. Still don't.
http://www.oznet.ksu.edu/dp_hfrr/extensn/problems/earthworms.htm
Problem: Earthworms - Lumbricus terrestris Earthworm Damage to Lawn.jpg (49339 bytes)
Description: If you have mounds of soil in your lawn that make it hard to mow, nightcrawlers may be the cause. These bumps are randomly spaced rather than a "run" like is seen with moles.
Nightcrawlers are large worms (usually 4 to 8 inches or more). They belong to a group of earthworms known as deep-burrowers. The deep-burrowers build large, vertical, permanent burrows that may reach as deep as 5 or 6 feet. Nightcrawlers pull plant material down into their burrows which can be fed on later. The bumps you see on top of the ground are called "middens" and are a mixture of plant residues and castings (worm feces). These middens may be used for protection and food reserves. The burrows can have a significant positive effect on soil by opening up channels for water and air to penetrate. Roots also like these channels due to the ease of root penetration and nutrients found in the casting material lining the burrow.
Recommendations: Nightcrawlers actually help the soil but may make it difficult to mow. Getting rid of the middens will be difficult. Rolling the lawn while the middens are soft may help temporarily, but mounds will be rebuilt when nightcrawlers become active again. Also, there is nothing labeled for nightcrawler control.
Some gardeners want to protect the nightcrawlers due to their positive effect on soils. Pesticides that may be used for other pests vary widely in their toxic effects on earthworms. Dylox appears to have no effect. Malathion may be slightly toxic while Sevin, Benomyl, copper sulfate, and the arsenicals (MSMA, DSMA) are extremely toxic. Avoid using the latter group while nightcrawlers are active if you wish to protect them.
References:
1. Earthworms and Crop Management, Purdue University Extension Pub AY-279
2. Biology of Earthworms by Edwards & Lofty, 2nd ed. Halsted Press
-----------
http://www.canr.uconn.edu/ces/ctpep/ct_bee.html
Protecting Honey Bees From Pesticide Poisoning
Honey bees are required for the pollination of many vegetable and fruit crops. Without adequate populations of bees, the production of these and other crops would be impossible. In addition, bee colonies are maintained for their honey and wax production.
Serious Honey bee kills and hive decimations in Connecticut and other states have been attributed to the use of certain pesticides, especially insecticides in sweet corn fields and apple orchards. Since honeybees are insects, many insecticides used for pest control are toxic to them. The relative toxicities of various pesticides to honey bees are presented in Table 1. For information on mammalian toxicities contact your local county agent. . . .
Bees may be killed while foraging on blooming plants that have been treated by certain pesticides. The greatest hazard, however, is from insecticides, such as carbaryl (Sevin), Penncap-M and others, that may be unintentionally carried with pollen back to the hive. . . . -----------
Sevin, toxic to earthworm, toxic to bees and, brought to you by Charlie's favorite company, Bayer.
If your just growing ornamentals and, you don't care about your neighbors, then it may be a reasonable choice. But if you care for this planet, there must be a better way but, then I'm a squirrel hugger too.
- Billy Coloribus gustibus non disputatum (mostly)
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Hey Om:
Have you ever tried diatomaceous earth for mites/lice on chickens?
I just put some Sevin in my hens' favorite dust hole, but I hate using stuff like that, if at all possible to find a natural remedy. I sure as hell didn't want to dust the hens directly with the stuff.
I figure that if I need to glove-up to put something on my critters, it's probably not something I really want to use, if there's any viable alternative...
The reason I moved to Alaska was because of going into anaphylactic shock after spraying some poison on some apple trees. Damn near died. I decided if I was going to die in my early '30's, it would at least be somewhere that I like living.
After growing up around horticultural poisons in my mom's greenhouses, I've had my lifetime dose anyway.
Jan
--
Bedouin proverb: If you have no troubles, buy a goat.

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It didn't work worth a flip.

5% is safe to dust the birds directly.

I never bothered to glove up or wear a mask. If I'm going to expose my pets to it...
It's not something I ever had to use with great frequency. Once or twice per year.
Ivermectin in the water works too if you don't want to use a topical remedy.
Once per year I sevin the lawn at the same time I put front line on the dogs and cats to control fleas. Seems to be all it really takes.

There are levels of safety...
Pyrethrine is about the only spray I use. I use the pyrethrine cat flea spray on flies in the house. It's the safest thing I can use around Freya. She is a Goffins Cockatoo. Birds are very sensitive to poison sprays.
I'm not crazy about pesticide use and there are ones that I will NEVER get near my house. Very limited use of sevin and pyrethrine is my limit, and BT for caterpillars.
I manage to maintain a healthy population of lizards, toads, spiders and other predatory insects in my yard. :-)
Unfortunately, those won't control spider mites or mealy bugs.
I did purchase lacewing eggs last year to wipe out the mealy bugs and scale in the greenhouse and that worked better than any pesticide ever did! If you can find a natural predator for spider mites, that'd be cool.
I'd been fighting scale on my succulents during the winter months for two years until I bought the lacewing eggs. Haven't seen scale since. :-D
--
Peace, Om

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Steve Calvin wrote:

Most insecticides are not very effective against mites. You might try horticultural oil, if the weather is not too hot where you are. The bottle probably says "dormant oil spray", and it should have directions for mixing it half-strength for spraying mites, white flies, etc. I just used it last week to get rid of red mites on Wife's miniature roses. (this reminds me, I need to spray them again today) If the temperature is above 85F, I believe you can still use the stuff if you spray in the evenings.
Blasting the plants with a hard spray of water also kind of works. I would try to kill as many as possible first with the oil.
Bob
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Steve Calvin said:

Red mites swarming all over the side of the house, etc. sounds more like clover mites than spider mites. (Red spider mites are so small as to be almost invisible, and hardly appear red to the naked eye.)
Clover mites normally feed on lawn grasses and clover.
"Mites seen on the outside of buildings can be killed with a direct spray of an insecticidal soap or regular liquid dish-washing soap at the rate of 2 tablespoons per gallon of water. This treatment will not provide any residual control."
http://www.ca.uky.edu/entomology/entfacts/ef627.asp
http://ohioline.osu.edu/hyg-fact/2000/2095.html
--
Pat in Plymouth MI ('someplace.net' is comcast)

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Pat Kiewicz wrote:

Interesting, maybe I don't have red spider mites then. ;-)
Would the DW soap hurt flowers such as roses?
I did hit 'em with the stuff I posted about and as soon as I sprayed 'em they died, immediately but again, no residual control.
--
Steve

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Steve Calvin said:

provide

It's possible (especially on a hot day). You could always come back around a short time later and rinse it off.
The commercial insecticidal soaps are tested to maximize insect kill and minimize phytotoxicity.

Too much residual effect is what makes some pesticides a bad environmental option...
--
Pat in Plymouth MI ('someplace.net' is comcast)

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Bit late and would definatelky hurt the plants but we used sulphur candles in very early spring as we had bad red spider mite last year.
Hopefully that killed them.
On Sun, 03 Jun 2007 08:19:21 -0400, Steve Calvin

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