Kelly Irvin
Wed, 12 Feb 2003 06:47:47 PST

Thanks for the useful information written with witt. I will definitely 
keep the information for my records. I've not heard of quassis wood 
before so wouldn't even begin to know where to search for it. Does it 
have another name?

Hamish Sloan wrote:

>Mary Sue wrote:
>"I'm eager for aphid control stories too especially if anyone has some
>reliable ones that don't involve heavy duty poison control. I've used
>things like pyrola and neem when I first have discovered aphids every year
>and neither gives as good control as I would like. The neem didn't seem to
>phase them."
>What are pyrola and neem?
>We are having problems with garden insecticides, fungicides, etc. this side 
>of the pond because of a recent EU directive requiring registration of all 
>such materials for agricultural or horticultural use. The large 
>registration fee (about ?100,000 if I remember correctly, but I may be 
>exaggerating as I am anti EU bureaucratic ------------ (insert word here 
>that insults a bull)) has put off many suppliers registering sprays for 
>home gardeners. The cost is not justified by the relatively small sales 
>levels and they are disappearing from the shelves of our garden suppliers.
>So for a real killer, I'll have to go back to that natural source tobacco 
>and extract the nicotine. We still have derris and pyrethrum but they are 
>not strong enough for some situations.
>A dilute solution of washing up liquid may be effective for aphis and 
>caterpillars, parrticularly early in the season and while infestations are 
>light, but try it carefully first. Some of these washing up liquids have 
>many constituents and the formulations change from time to time. 
>Concentration in water at about the same level as you use for washing up 
>the dishes.
>(Sexist joke for you, Cathy. Quiz master in TV show: " What will you do 
>with your prize money? Buy a new dishwasher perhaps?" Male contestant: "No, 
>we don't need a new dishwasher. I AM the dishwasher.")
>Home Made Nicotine Insecticide
>Note: Both this and the next recipe can be a bit smelly in the making. Do 
>it in the garden shed or outside if you are in one of those sunny places. 
>Choose the wind direction appropriately.
>Soft Soap 1 pound (we have a proprietary soft soap here called Swarfega 
>that would do, but there are cheaper brands around that will be good 
>enough. Don't use washing up liquid. I've not tried it instead of soft soap 
>but I suspect the high concentration needed and the presence of cationic 
>surfactants as well as anionic ones may give undesired results, i.e., dead 
>Tobacco 4 ounces (any cured tobacco will do, even cigarette ends. The best 
>I know, because it has more nicotine, is pipe smokers shag. I would imagine 
>that western chewing tobacco would be good stuff - go on, surprise your 
>local store!)
>Cut up the tobacco first, if necessary. Boil the tobacco in 2 gallons water 
>for two hours; just keep it simmering as if you were making jam and 
>maintain the volume at two gallons. Strain through an old piece of cloth 
>such as a pajama leg knotted at the bottom. Gently boil the clear solution 
>with the soft soap until completely dispersed. Bottle the mixture as it 
>will keep for years - it is too poisonous for bacteria.
>To spray, use one part of this mixture to four parts water. [Part of the 
>effectiveness of this recipe probably lies in the detergent action of the 
>soft soap.] As nicotine is poisonous, don't use it on your fruit and 
>vegetables unless there is going to be a good rain to wash it away. Even 
>without the nicotine the soft soap isn't very tasty either. (Does all this 
>put you off smoking?)
>Quassia Spray
>If you can get hold of any quassia wood chips, this spray is good against 
>aphis, caterpillars and Gooseberry sawfly. However, don't use it on your 
>leaf vegetables - cabbage, brussels, spinach, etc. as it can give a bitter 
>taste. It won't hurt, it's not poisonous to humans, birds or other animals 
>but ... yuck. The bitterness will keep the birds off fruit buds in Spring.
>Boil 0.5 pound quassia wood chips vigorously with 1 gallon water for two 
>hours. Add more water as the it boils away to keep the volume at the 1 
>gallon mark. Strain through your pajama leg (without your leg inside it, of 
>course). Add 1 ounce ordinary soap, boil till it dissolves, bottle, store 
>as long as you like.
>Use 1 part mixture to 5 parts water as your spray.
>Regards to all
>Hamish Sloan
>pbs mailing list

Mr. Kelly M. Irvin
The Bulbmeister
4407 Town Vu Road
Bentonville, AR 72712

USDA Cold Hardiness Zone 6b


More information about the pbs mailing list