The epic wrath of this adorable pest is upon us. Yesterday, my kale and arugula seedlings were sad looking with tiny holes in the leaves, so I leaned in for a closer look and saw my tiny enemy. They look cute especially since they jump like little sprites but make no mistake - They. Will. Kill. Kale. And many other things. But that kale of mine must live!
So I found some solutions using the trusty interweb:
- Water and Fertilize - enough water and the right conditions give the plant the best chance of surviving and overcoming the stress of a pest. Some research has shown that flea beetles may not like leaves after they've been treated with fertilizer, so a sprinkle of dilution of sea kelp and water could do the trick.
- Trap Cropping - interplant what you're cultivating with Giant Mustard or Radishes. The beetle will eat them instead.
- Row cover - reemay or the like
- Sticky tape . . . super high tech.
- Infuse water with garlic, onion, and mint and spray on plants - another potential repellant
They will not win.