We have all heard of the honeydew melon, and it is undeniably tasty. However, there is another kind of honeydew, and despite tasting like sugar, it is actually quite gross. This type of honeydew is of course…bug feces.
If you are an avid gardener, then you most likely have encountered honeydew and are aware of its detrimental effect on plant life, but you may not know where it comes from. Honeydew on plants is often coated in black soot, and appears as black dots that attract other bugs. Honeydew is sticky and sugary, which is why so many bugs enjoy it.
Honeydew is secreted from the “abdomen terminal” of insects that feed on the sap of plants, which is rich in sugary substances. The insects responsible are most often Aphids, Mealybugs or Soft Scale. It is already well known that Aphids spell trouble for the health of plant life, but few are aware of this particular source of damage. Although honeydew itself is not harmful to plants, the ants and other insects that it attracts will feed on the honeydew, and therefore it will feed on the plants that the honeydew is found on.
In order to rid your garden of honeydew you naturally must rid your garden of the bugs that produce it. To do this, spray your garden with neem oil, palm oil, or insecticidal soap. It is a good idea to search your garden for honeydew before damage occurs. Good luck with all of your gardening this summer.
Have you ever found honeydew in your garden? Did you know what the stuff was?