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Any suggestions for dealing with earwigs that attack basil, etc.? Diazinon is specific for them, but can't be use on food crops.
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Any suggestions for dealing with earwigs that attack basil, etc.? Diazinon is specific for them, but can't be use on food crops.

I'm not sure which diazinon label you read, but it can be used on vegetables. However, basil nor any other herbs are listed on the label as plants on which it can be used. Other insecticides labeled for vegetable and earwig control include liquid sevin and malathion. But neither of them list basil as a plant that can be sprayed.

What can you do? This is just a thought, not a recommendation. The longest harvest restriction I saw on the diazinon label was 14 days?, I think. You could spray and not harvest for that period of time.

A better solution would be to blast the basil plant with water, but not hard enough to damage the plant. This should knock most of the earwigs off onto the ground. Then immediately treat the ground around the plant with diazinon. This should take care of a lot of the earwigs. You may have to reapeat this treament several times.

Hope this helps,
Tony
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I think Diazinon imparts flavor to veggies. Its the nuclear weapon in your arsenal these days. I wouldn't use it unless necessary.

Sevin is safest for veggies. Malathion is not bad (if you don't mind the sulfur odor) and are willing to wait the 14 days before harvesting. It is among the more toxic to humans, but degrades to "harmless" products fairly quickly.
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