Currants in many gardens take pride of place, because this culture is notable for its relative unpretentiousness and ability to bestow gardeners not only delicious vitamin berries, but also healthy leaves and shoots. The aroma of blackcurrant cannot be confused with the smell of other crops, but sometimes planting this crop risks dying due to the invasion of pests. The most insidious of them are currant bud and spider mites. Microscopic in size, they destroy the crop and lead to complete depletion of the bushes.
The extent of the harm
Both the kidney and spider mites can lead to crop loss, and in the absence of struggle with them, cause the death of blackcurrant plantings. Despite their small size, these pests cause enormous damage to plants due to their numbers. In addition, the bushes weakened by their activity become a target for various diseases and other pests.
In early April, female kidney mites begin to actively lay eggs (up to 8000 from one female), which "mature" within 6-12 days. At the end of this time, young individuals of the kidney tick emerge and rush to the healthy parts of the plants, climbing inside the still unopened buds. They feed on the sap of plants, leading to the drying out of undeveloped leaves, inflorescences and young shoots. In one year, a kidney tick gives at least 5 generations of offspring.
However, the main danger is not only the depletion of the plant. Even if timely measures are taken to combat the pest, the bush may suffer from a terry virus, which can only be eliminated by completely destroying the plant.
Spider mite is a pest that causes weakening of the plant. Its activity leads to a deterioration in winter hardiness, which is why blackcurrants can freeze even in warm winters with large snow cover. There is no need to talk about productivity at all, since without a stock of certain substances obtained in the process of photosynthesis, flower buds are not laid on this crop.
Description of pests and signs of their appearance
The detection of ticks on black currant does not always occur within a few days after they settle on the plantings. This is primarily due to the small size of the pests. For example, a kidney tick has a body length of only 0.2 mm - females, the males have an even smaller body, and the spider mite - from 0.24 to 0.47 mm (males and females, respectively). Without magnifying glasses, finding them can be extremely problematic, but traces of their activity are visible to the naked eye.
How to deal with a kidney tick on currant
Signs of activity of a kidney tick
As its name implies, a currant bud mite affects only the buds of a plant. It is by their appearance that one can detect the presence of a pest on the plantings. During snowmelt, unusually large buds, sometimes severely deformed, are clearly visible on infected plants. The fact is that sexually mature female ticks winter in them, ready for breeding with the onset of the first fine days.
The state of planting and, accordingly, the future crop depends on the time of detection of spider mites and bud mites on black currant. That is why it is recommended to inspect the branches annually for swollen buds and remove them until the first generation of ticks is released. With summer infection, signs of damage by kidney mites become changes in the shape, color and structure of apical leaf blades. They become leathery, slightly deformed and brighten.
Signs of a spider mite
It's not for nothing that the spider mite is called the scourge of gardens, because this pest has more than 200 crops which he eats throughout the summer. Only female pests survive the winter, hiding under the fallen leaves. In spring, they climb plants and lay thousands of translucent eggs on young leaves. A week later, larvae emerge from them, which entangle the leaf blade in the web and feed on its juices.
You can notice the activity of spider mites with a careful examination of blackcurrant. First, light microscopic dots appear on the leaves of (single) bushes, which later completely cover them. Gradually, similar marbling passes to neighboring leaf blades. Sometimes the thinnest cobweb can be found on berry clusters.
How to process currant bushes
All tools for combating ticks on blackcurrant are divided into two types:
- organic (folk).
To reduce the number of pests on a single plant, you can selectively cut infected branches and destroy them in a fire. It is not recommended to leave cut branches even for a short time within the garden, and even more so throw them on the ground, as pests can get to healthy plants located nearby.
An important point: spider mites and kidney mites are not affected by conventional insecticides, as these pests are not insects! In case of their appearance, it is necessary to use acaricides and insectoacaricides.
The most popular and safe for humans and warm-blooded animals are drugs based on colloidal sulfur and hormonal acaricidal drugs:
- Forbid 4F.
It is recommended to use them at the time of migration of female spider mites and kidney mites, as well as during the mass breeding of offspring, that is, in the spring, during the blooming of leaves. For a greater effect, it is important to carry out two treatments with an interval between them of 10-12 days.
After harvesting, you can use more powerful organophosphate acaricides of systemic action:
Young non-fruiting plantings are treated with acaricides containing active ingredients based on dimethoate:
It is important not to exceed the dosage of drugs and not try to use a larger amount of solution than recommended by the instructions for use. It is also recommended to alternate means so that pests do not develop immunity to them.
It is not an ordinary method to free the garden from unsolicited microscopic guests - cultivating useful insects in it, which in nature consider ticks (including kidney and spider mites) as food. These include bedbugs, carnivorous ticks, stetorus (ladybug) and lacewings.
Among the most popular remedies for spider mites and kidney mites are classic infusions from plants that differ either in strong aroma or in the abundance of bitterness in them. So, the most effective are the following formulations:
- Infusion of tobacco or shag.
- Infusion of the roots and leaves of dandelion.
- Infusion of garlic.
- A decoction of onion peels.
- A decoction of unripe walnuts.
- Garlic infusion.
The lack of folk remedies is the need for multiple processing throughout the growing season with an interval of 5-7 days. Advantages - complete safety for people and pets. Moreover, treatment with folk remedies can be carried out even at the time of harvest ripening.
Tick resistant varieties
Unfortunately, at the moment there is no variety of currant that is resistant to attack by all types of ticks, including bud and arachnoid. The second, by the way, does not shun the destruction of the strongest plants, immune to diseases and pests.
Only some blackcurrant varieties are resistant to the kidney tick:
|Grade name||Grade description||The degree of resistance to the kidney tick|
|Early Potapenko||A quick variety with a large sweet berry. Compact, medium height. The disadvantage is earlier aging||High|
|Otradnaya||A tall plant with large berries. Grade advantages - high winter, drought and heat resistance||Above average|
|Keen||Tall, leafy shrub, large, plum-shaped fruits, sweet and dense||High|
|Nara||A medium-sized bush with spreading curved branches. The berries are very large and sweet, ripen early||High|
|Kipiana||Early-fruited early-growing variety with large berries and a medium-sized spreading bush||High|
In addition to these varieties, blackcurrant "Nightingale Night", "Belorusskaya Rannaya" and "Minx" possesses relative resistance to the kidney tick. The red currant is affected by the kidney tick as often as the black one. Currently, breeders have bred several varieties resistant to this pest.
|Grade name||a brief description of||Degree of stability|
|Earring||Winter-hardy tall variety with a spreading branched crown and small-sized sweet-sour berries||Above average|
|Early sweet||A medium-sized bush with a compact semi-spreading crown. The berries are small, very tasty.||High|
|Dutch early||Early ripe variety with a spreading medium-crowned crown. The berries are large, with a noticeable sourness.||High|
|Memory of Gubenko||A high-yielding small-fruited variety with a spreading medium-crowned crown. The taste qualities of the berries are excellent.||Very high|
|Transdanubian||Large-fruited variety with medium vigor. Spreading, compact, medium-sized bush||High|
It is possible to effectively deal with ticks on blackcurrant bushes by many methods, including dressing the plants with chemistry or using folk remedies. However, a much simpler technique is to prevent the infection of the garden with these pests.
Despite the apparent complexity, it is possible to stop the onset of ticks on black currant by performing a few simple steps:
- Regular weed control on site. Many pests often wait for them on winter, and ticks among them.
- Cleaning the autumn garden from fallen leaves. Most often the spider mite winters in them.
- Propagation of black currant with healthy shoots or already rooted seedlings. To avoid the appearance of diseased plants on the site, it is recommended to warm them up in hot water (up to 46 degrees) for no more than 15 minutes before planting.
- Strengthening the resistance (own immunity) of plants to pests by timely application of fertilizers to the soil and foliar top dressing.
In addition, it is important to dig up the soil annually directly under the currant bushes, and in the fall to remove from the plants not fallen leaves and increased bud size.
How to get rid of a spider mite
The main point in the fight against spider mites and kidney mites is timeliness and consistency. With a proper approach and responsible implementation of agrotechnical requirements, the bushes of this crop will remain healthy, even if ticks spoil all plantings in neighboring neighbors.