Check peppermint regularly for lice
Lice are very common in peppermint. You should therefore check your plants as regularly as possible so that you can do something about the pests the first time they appear.
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The lice infestation can be seen with the naked eye. You see the little crawling ghosts, which unfortunately can also fly, on the top and bottom of the leaf. The leaves are coated with a sticky mass.
Since peppermint is used in the kitchen, you should resort to biological means and not use chemical aphid killers. The herb cannot be consumed for weeks afterwards.
Biological means of combating lice
- Nettle stock
- Soapy water
- Tobacco brew
- Insect hotels
With light infestation
Pick up the aphids by hand or wash them down with water from a spray bottle. The jet has to be a bit stronger because the lice are quite tight.
With severe infestation
If the plants are too heavily infested, you can use stock made from nettles, tobacco or soapy water. Treatment must be repeated several times to be effective. You should then wait two to three weeks before harvesting.
Put fresh nettle herb - without flowers! - for two days in cold water. Then strain the brew and spray the infected leaves with it. Tobacco brew can be made in the same way.
For soapy water, use curd soap. Detergents are not suitable. Dissolve the soap in water and fill the lye into the spray bottle.
Other insects like lacewings and ladybugs are the best protection. Settle the beneficial insects in the garden by hanging insect hotels near the peppermint.
Tips & Tricks
Look for ant trails in the garden. Ants keep louse farms on the peppermint. Break down the walkways to prevent the ants from bringing new lice onto the peppermint, and remove any ant nests near your vegetable and herb beds.