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Old July 19, 2017   #16
b54red's Avatar
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Alabama
Posts: 6,327

I have never found anything to keep thrips away. Like someone said they come in waves and infect a few or many plants each time. Some years my loses from TSWV are relatively low but always at least 10% of my tomatoes and about that % of my bell peppers. Last year TSWV was not too bad on tomatoes but nearly wiped out all my bell peppers and even most of my Jalapenos. So far this year the loses on both tomatoes and bell peppers are at the usual 10% level and that is something I have just had to learn to live with. I complain when the TSWV is bad but found that no amount of spraying or helpful insects made much difference that I could see. Losing some plants to TSWV is just another of the problems that growing tomatoes and peppers around here entails. I always plant way more than I need that way I don't feel so bad when I lose a few but every once in a while a year like last year will happen with peppers or tomatoes and then I am really upset. I try to have some replacement plants to help if the losses are too bad and usually the worst infections occur in the early part of the season so those plants really come in handy sometimes.

I have noticed that the TSWV affects don't show up until a week or two after the thrips have visited. I'm always on pins and needles after a big wave of them comes in waiting to see how bad it will be in a few weeks. Just keep an eye on the plants you saw the thrips on for any signs of TSWV. Sometimes they don't infect any and other times a lot so you might just be lucky and have no plants get TSWV. The damage they can do to the blooms on the other hand can result in lower production but that is a minor concern compared to the TSWV virus.

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Old July 24, 2017   #17
Dewayne mater
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Join Date: May 2008
Location: DFW, Texas
Posts: 1,169

Spinosad works best for me. Know that you'll have to use it at least twice in 7 days, probably 3 times in 15 days is better. That will wipe out your population. They will be back though. Yellow sticky traps are a good thing because they trap some thrips, but also they give you a good idea as to how big your population is. If you just see 3 or 4, you are in good shape!

They cause 2 main problems that make treating them a worthwhile endeavor: one, they are a vector for TSVW and if you get that, you may see it spread quickly if you aren't treating thrips as they take it from plant to plant. Two, a heavy infestation will destroy the pollen in the blossoms and your otherwise healthy looking plant will see the blossoms turn brown, then fall off, never producing.
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