How to treat this (possibly aphids?) infection without hurting my honeybees and other pollenators?
I first noticed the sticky sap-like substance dripping off this maple tree, and the dropped green leaves sticking to the bottom of my shoes. Upon further inspection I also see most of the leaves I can reach are covered with these tiny white clusters of what I think are aphids or scale. There are also some ladybugs, hopefully enjoying the feast and naturally helping me, but my honeybees are all over this tree. I would like to solve the issue organically as it is very close to (almost directly above a part of) my vegetable garden and I know my bees are flying close by and landing. I considered Safer Soap, the insecticide, but I figured I’d ask for advice first.
Washington County Oregon
Thank you for your questions. I cannot see the aphids very well, but the presence of their predators is a good sign. Here is a good Extension article on aphids and methods of control, particularly near vegetable gardens, and being aware of pollinators: http://ipm.ucanr.edu/PMG/PESTNOTES/pn7404.html
I hope this is helpful. Good luck!