Is it idiotic to spray muskmelon plants with imidan?

For the last few years I’ve been fighting a losing battle against bacterial wilt and the cucumber beetle. This year I’ve had my muskmelons covered with fabric to protect them but they’re just about to flower. Is it idiotic to give them a blast of Imidan tonight in order to ward off the cucumber beetles?

If the leaves are sprayed in there are no flowers yet, will the Imidan harm the bees and the flowers appear?


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Should I take the lack of responses to mean, “Yes, it’s idiotic, don’t spray them”. ?!?!? :wink:

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I would take it to mean that no one has tried it and we don’t know. Is that the best chemical to kill the beetles? How hard is it on the bees? Is there something better? You should be able to find some of those answers online. I don’t know myself.

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Before Imidan, have you exhausted your other reasonable possibilities? Some suggestions:

Why not use a row cover, and take the row cover off once a day in order to pollinate your melons with a paintbrush?

There’s also a new product called BTG which is supposed to work like BTK except for beetles.

Surround is supposed to repel cucumber beetles and, since most people don’t eat the outside of the melon, you’ll be able to keep a nice, thick coat on.

Why not make the base of your melons inhospitable to larva? Start your plants inside, and before you take them outside, wrap the stems in something the beetle can’t penetrate. Several layers of parafilm, maybe? A layer of plastic? Medical tape?

All that being said, Cornell recommends “Admire” (Imidacloprid) if you’re going to use a systemic, and even gives the rates of application:

I can’t say I know the difference between Imidan/Admire, so I’ll leave that to you to research to see if you can sub one for the other… :smiley: