How to Keep Grasshoppers Away From Tomato Plants

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Grasshoppers, if left in the tomato garden, can do a lot of damage.
Grasshoppers, if left in the tomato garden, can do a lot of damage. (Image: grasshopper image by Bube from Fotolia.com)

Grasshoppers, found throughout North America, are a pest in the garden. Growing tomato plants is hard work but when grasshoppers begin to eat those plants, they can do so much damage that the tomatoes will die. The best times to take care of grasshoppers are while they are still small. If you wait until the grasshoppers are into their adult stage, it is almost impossible to keep them away from your tomato plants unless you go in there and catch them yourself.

Things You'll Need

  • Warm water
  • Bucket
  • Liquid dish soap
  • Garden sprayer
  • Insecticides
  • Floating row cover or metal mesh screen netting
  • Grasshoppers
  • Blender
  • Chickens
  • Bird feeder, birdbath or bird houses
  • Horehound, cilantro or calendula

Mix some insecticidal soap by putting 2 quarts of warm water into a bucket. Add 4 tbsp. of liquid dish soap. Mix and pour into a sprayer. Go to your tomato plants and spray the grasshoppers with this solution. Reapply every other day as needed.

Use insecticides on your tomato plants to control grasshoppers. Some come as a spray or as a dusting powder. Read and follow the label directions. Make sure it is for tomato plants before you use it.

Lay down floating row covers or use metal screening. Drape metal mesh netting over the tomato plants to help protect them from grasshoppers. If you use floating row covers, keep a watch on them because the grasshoppers can chew holes into the plastic.

Allow a strip of grass, to remain unmowed around the perimeter of your garden. This may help to keep the grasshoppers out of the garden.

Make some bait. Catch 24 or more grasshoppers and place them in a blender with about a quart of water. Blend the mixture together. Pour this into a spray bottle and leave it for two days. Then go out and spray the tomato plants with this mixture.

Allow chickens to roam around by the tomato garden and they will eat the grasshoppers. If you don’t live on a farm, you can encourage other birds to stay around and eat. Put up some bird feeders, some birdbaths, or if you have a shady place, put up some birdhouses around your tomato garden area. Birds will eat the grasshoppers.

Combine tomato plants with other plants that repel grasshoppers. Some plants that help with this are horehound, cilantro and calendula.

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