In the January/February 2014 issue of Organic Gardener magazine PHIL DUDMAN refers to soap and white oil sprays to control scale insects on mango trees. Here are his recipes.
Homemade White Oil
Take an empty jar or plastic bottle, pour in a cup of ordinary cooking oil and ¼ cup of dishwashing liquid. Give it a good shake - you'll see it turn white. That’s your white oil concentrate. Label the container with the correct dilution rate – ‘one tablespoon per litre of water’. It's important to stick with this rate because too much oil will cause leaf burn and avoid using it in very hot weather (over 25°C) because it can also burn foliage. Mix it well before and during spraying.
Combine 2 cups of water with 2 teaspoons of dishwashing liquid in a spray bottle. Give it a good shake and spray it all over the insects. Do it 3-4 times every 5 days to put a stop to big infestations. Note: apply it late in the day when temperatures are cool to avoid leaf burn.
To read Phil's article on growing mangoes click here to buy the latest issue.
First published: December 2013