Aphids on my rose of sharon
Hi - I saw tons of aphids on the tips of my rose of Sharon bushes, that otherwise are leafing out nicely. I bought some Garden Safe Insecticidal soap (labeled as "for organic gardening") and started to spray when I saw a few lady bugs. So I stopped, not wanting to harm the lady bugs and hoping they will feast on the aphids. If I go back in a few days and the aphids are still abundant - if I spray the soap without hitting any lady bugs directly, is that okay? There was also Neem oil at Lowe's which I didn't buy because it was more expensive. Is that an alternative? Thank you in advance.
Montgomery County Maryland
Aphids are not a big issue with rose of Sharon. Sometimes aphid populations are big before the predator insects have yet built up, but once they do, then the aphids are brought under control.
Insecticidal soap (such as yours) or horticultural oil is a good choice, and will not harm the lady beetles or lady beetle larvae unless it directly lands on them. Still, you might want to just wait and let nature take care of it, since aphids are not a danger to rose of Sharon.