Hi, a few years ago I tried growing squash and the vine borer got all of...

Asked June 13, 2014, 4:20 PM EDT

Hi, a few years ago I tried growing squash and the vine borer got all of them. I thought I'd try again this year and have kept row covers over the plants the past few weeks. The plants are huge and have started producing flowers, so yesterday I took the row covers off from 8am-1pm so bees could pollinate them. Today when I went out to put the row covers back on at 1, there was a moth/wasp laying eggs on one of the vines!!! I killed it immediately and then checked the plants for eggs. I found about a dozen brown eggs. They were mostly pretty high up on the vines, not close to the base of the plant, and some were singular, not grouped together like in the photos I've seen of them online. I removed all the eggs but I'm sure I missed some. My question is, when do the wasp/moths stop laying eggs and will it be safe to take the row covers off? I can try pollinating the plants myself, but the squash are in my front yard in Wildewood and I'm sure my neighbors don't like the row covers. Thanks!

St. Mary's County Maryland pest control

1 Response

In your area, there are 2 generations a year. The first mating time is May/ June and then again in July/ August. The mated female can be laying eggs for 2 weeks. You may try growing less susceptible varieties. Or, try planting one plant every couple of weeks to have a continuous harvest even if one plant is hit. The other options would be to watch for and destroy the eggs and watch for the first signs of injury and remove the borer fromt he vine. LW