Pest identification & Pesticides

Asked July 30, 2020, 1:43 PM EDT

Can you help me identify this pest that I keep finding on the back of my cucumber leaves and is there an organic pesticide for them?

Also, are these other phots showing spider mites on my cucumber leaves? My neem oil and peppermint castile soap mix doesn't appear to be working very well and I would like to know how to get rid of them using an organic method as well.

If organic pesticides, aren't effective, please let me know other options as well. Many thanks!

Baltimore County Maryland

1 Response

Hi - The insects in your first photo are newly hatched (first instar) brown marmorated stink bugs. Wear garden gloves and crush them and the white egg masses, or brush them off into a container of soapy water and discard them.

Also, yes, we do see signs of spider mites on your cucumber plant. Spider mites thrive in sunny, hot, dry conditions and an infestation can develop quickly in temperatures above 90F. The first step we recommend for organic control is to hose off the plants with cool water to try to dislodge them and disrupt their feeding. Repeat every 2-3 days or so in hot, dry weather. Horticultural oil or insecticidal soap also can be used to manage spider mites. Insecticidal soap can be found in garden stores -- it is different than castile soap and safe to use on plants. Consult and follow the product label instructions.
Refer to our web page on spider mites for additional methods of prevention and control.

This page from University of Minnesota Extension also has very good information and tips for managing spider mites in a home garden.