questionsis it just me here in the south, or is there an…

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Wouldn't gasoline and roundup get rid of the shrubs and roses rather than the bugs? (Or is that what you meant?)

FWIW, I'm in NY City and haven't noticed that many more bugs this year than previously, with the exception of centipedes in the house (the cats have been finding them more often than I recall from the past). And I would expect there to be quite a few more bugs this summer, given how warm last winter was.

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Are you talking about the little hopper-grasses or those gargantuan monsters that can carry off a small dog and take a car backing over them before they die?

@Shrdlu: recommended Sevin when I was complaining about my plants being over run by worms and bugs. I've only applied it once (liquid form) but it's worked miracles.

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I use a castille soap and water mix:

http://www.care2.com/greenliving/homemade-insecticidal-soap.html

Works well, especially on my rose bushes.

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@baqui63: I know where you are. :) You wouldn't believe how bad these insects are here. They are basically shredding anything green here. I would like to keep my shrubs and house, since they are in very close proximity. That's why I am ruling out gasoliune and roundup.

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@lavikinga: I've considered Sevin, but we are in a situation where my plants need to be watered daily because of the drought factor. I don't want to spray insecticide then have it wash off the next evening. Is there some kind of natural deterrent, similar in concept to a scarecrow?

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@okham: Sounds interesting. The article makes me want to look a little more into the soap theory. Thanks!

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Down here in lower Alabama don't see any extra grasshoppers but mosquitos seem to be a bit more noticeable.

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@jsimsace: Do what I told @lavikinga. Sevin does wash off, but not all that quickly. Best part is, it'll start killing those evil [profanity deleted before typing] and bring down the population.

I have had problems with certain insects myself, notably a variety of pavement ants. I'm allergic to ant stings (ants are actually the same family as wasps, and the part that hurts isn't the bite, it's the sting). I have a container of Sevin dust that I carry in my gardening cart, and I often turn over the stones near where I'll be weeding later, so as to kill them ahead of time. Normally their numbers are decimated in the winter, but we haven't had enough cold weather the last two years, and the ants are a real problem.

Back to your grasshoppers. Yes, they seem to be worse in certain areas in the southeast. I'd use the dust, rather than the liquid. It seems to stick more. Just remember to not use it a day or two before eating garden stuff.

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@jsimsace: Many plants (such as roses) can have a dusting more often than others. Really, you should be watering your roses at the root, and not the leaves, if you can (I recognize that automatic sprinkling systems may not give you that choice).

I have seen very few grasshoppers or crickets this year, but I also encourage birds to visit my yard (I have a fence that only one neighborhood cat has mastered, and the magpies chase her back out. Have I said how much I like magpies? I do. In turn, they love insects.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Black-billed_Magpie

You may also try netting. You can usually find dense nets at garden supply stores, or even Lowe's or Home Depot. Grasshoppers are very persistent, however. I recommend the death in a can, myself.

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@mtm2: waves to LA, where I lived for 4 yrs before moving back home up here to N. AL
I haven't been back for a visit to the good ol' Redneck Riviera in a good while. Need to plan a beach trip soon.

@jsimsace: We're drought-stricken, too, and still on water rationing in areas. Did finally get a couple of days of rain and less oppressive temps last week, and this week have had those scattered, random, 20 to 30-minute afternoon pop-up t-showers with the heat back to make it yucky and muggy. I haven't noticed ANY grasshoppers at all, though, now that you mention it. Didn't even occur to me that I haven't seen any. But boy-howdy did the frogs have a party/orgy during those 2 days of rain last week! Maybe they feasted on all the grasshoppers, LOL. Good luck--thye can eat a LOT. Have you tried calling your county's ag extension office to see what they recommend? Ive alway found them to be very helpful and a wealth of information.

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Relocate to Seattle. We don't have grasshoppers. We also don't have fireflies, crickets, silverfish, or cockroaches. Our windshields and car grills never require cleaning from bug splatters. The bug poplulation is less than anyplace I ever experienced elsewhere in the US. We do have mosquitoes and flies, but there's less of them. We do have lots of slugs, though, so it's not perfect - but close.

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@nortonsark: We have too many people in Seattle that move, and then complain about the weather constantly. ;) No more moving people to Seattle! (Said in good hearted fun, mind you.)

That soap and water mix sure looks practical! :)

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@reginafilangee: Come on! It's been great other than the last week with all the rain.

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@mtm2: You got rain? Feel blessed. We have 3/4 of an inch so far this month and had about 1-3/4" last month. About the same in April and in May we got maybe 3-1/2 inches. All well below averages.