Scale problems on indoor herbs

I got a wild hair and built a light frame at the end of the season to bring all my containerized outdoor herbs in for winter cooking. Of course, I brought the bugs with them. Some hard sprays of water and a some dilute horticultural oil seems to have taken care of the aphids and white flies but my Basil and Kaffir Lime trees seem to be attracting scale that won't go away. It just keeps reappearing after manual removal.
Should I look forward to having to scrape it off once a week for the rest of the winter or will multiple applications of horticultural oil eventually take care of it.
And speaking of horticultural oil, I used it after really getting disgusted at the "syrup" the bugs were producing on my plants and increasing population of scale. I read where one state OKed its use for edible herbs but I have yet to actually attempt to eat anything I've sprayed. One source says it evaporates but that seems counter-intuitive...for an oil to evaporate. Should this stuff actually be used on culinary herbs? If not, what can get rid of the scale?
Most of the stuff is growing pretty well under flourescents next to an east facing window so I'll have plenty of herbs if I can get rid of the bugs. :)
thanks, gary
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Hi Gary, I use an oil called sunspray (or is it just sun oil?). I'll go look if it matters to you. Anyway, I have used that oil to kill scale and mites. It does actually seem to evaporate. On one really nasty mite infestation, I sprayed every week for 5 weeks (probably more than was needed). The plants were sort of greasy for a while after that but soon, there was no evidence of oil left at all. I use it on indoor ornamentals but it is also labeled for garden plants.
Steve
Gary Flynn wrote:

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hi! i don't know if this is of any help but i've got excellent assistance at http://www.koppert.nl/e0218.shtml . (i'm just a regular gardener & have no connection to the koppert company....). they offer a wide range of biological (not chemical!) products, and have provided excellent advice at several occations when i have had problems - for the greenhouse as well as for indoor plants. worth trying, maybe? :-) nina

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If a plant keeps getting scale that's probably an indication that the plant is weak or not in good condition.

The oil evaporates after a few days, or so. (Most of the oil spilled from a shipwreck evaporates off the ocean surface, hopefully before it gets washed to shore or to bird populations. This evaporation leaves just the heavy molecular fraction to sink to the sea floor. Things might be a bit different in Arctic waters, but you get the idea.)
You *can* make your own white oil using edible vegetable oil from your kitchen cupboard. If you do a google groups search of "white oil" and "John Savage" you will turn up previous posts I've made on the topic.
--
John Savage (news address invalid; keep news replies in newsgroup)


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Thanks for all the replies. The oil seemed to tame the problem after the second application. However, a word of advice:
Do not take Kaffir limes outside to spray them and then get distracted and forget them. Two nights out in December will make you kick yourself. It was a beautiful tree. :(
John Savage wrote:

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Gary Flynn wrote:

Well Gary, unless you live a little farther south than I'm thinking, you won't be bothered by bugs again on that one.
Steve PS Wondering where jmu.edu might be. James Madison U in Virginia?
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Steve wrote:

No bugs but no leaves either. :)

Yup on the JMU. Too far north. We had 7" of snow the night before.
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I'm wondering why this would be true? Would a strong plant have something in it's leaves to repel /discourage scale? Eileen
John Savage wrote:

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Apparently, yes. Healthy plants are able to fight off most of the organisms and microorganisms that would like to make a meal of some part of that plant, and to do this a healthy plant uses chemical or physical methods. It is when the plant is stressed or in poor condition that opportunistic invaders are able to get a foothold and overwhelm the plant's defences.
--
John Savage (news address invalid; keep news replies in newsgroup)


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writes:

something in

there are very many species of pests parasites, microorganisms, etc. some are very host-specific. I doubt there is any plant species that lacks pests, etc (in its native location).

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