Aphids on Brussel sprouts are attracted mainly by the plants’ big leaves, which provide a good habitat. And although the insects don’t damage the plant heads, they cause the growth of stunted and ugly sprouts, and plant weakness.Aphids on Brussel Sprout

Aphids can be removed using pesticides, or spraying them with water. Continue reading this article to learn the right way of dealing with them.

Why Are There Aphids on the Brussels Sprouts?

There are aphids on the Brussel sprouts because of the big leaves that they have and the tender or newly growing leaves. In addition, they may be attracted if the plant is unhealthy, weeds are growing around, high nitrogen levels, and the lack of predators.

The aphids on your brussels sprout are because of the plant’s big leaves. While these leaves are useless to humans, bugs find them attractive because they provide a perfect hiding place. These insects also attack weak plants, and could migrate from the nearby weeds into the kale garden.

– Big Brussels’ Leaves

Tiny black bugs on brussel sprouts are attracted by the plants’ big leaves. They hide inside the leaves, where they reproduce rapidly to form colonies. While hiding in the leaves, the insects feed on the sap from the stems and roots, because they would be trying to find a place to lay eggs and survive.

Aphids on these leaves are hard to spot, thanks to their camouflaging nature. As a result they will multiply uninterruptedly and continue feeding on the plant. You could notice the colonies on the stems and plants’ basements.

On the other hand, it would cause stunted growth in the plant and curled leaves regardless of the professional care you give to your Brussels. Even worse, the insects can weaken and kill the plant.

– New Brussels Leaves

New leaves indicate a healthy growing Brussels sprout but attract aphids. Aphids like freshly produced leaves because they are easy to pierce, making it easier to access the plant sap.New Brussels Leaves

The insects could cause tiny holes in the leaves, making it harder for the plant to photosynthesize, slowing down its growth. This is why they would go for the tender and newly growing leaves, as they are fresh and nutritious for them to live off.

As the new leaves age, they become harder to pierce through. The tiny bugs will migrate to other newly produced leaves on other plants or infest another garden. These bugs also feed on seedlings because they have soft parts, like the first leaves, stems, and roots, and note that these young plants are weak and could quickly die from insect attack.

– Unhealthy Plants

Another reason you have little bugs on brussel sprouts is because the plants are weak and struggling. Insects and other infections quickly attack unhealthy plants because of their inability to fight foreign organisms. These are also soft and easy to chew, making them a good-to-have meal for aphids.

There are many causes of unhealthy plants, when you are not providing the right amount of water leads to drought, making it harder for the roots to absorb minerals and nutrients from the soil to the plant, leading to slow growth. Too much water causes root rot, making it hard for plants to transport essential nutrients to the leaves, leading to stress.

Other causes of unhealthy Brussels are insufficient sunlight and essential nutrients like nitrogen. Attack by other insects and diseases can also make the plant vulnerable to aphid attacks. They would directly be going for the leaves that are yellowed, or damaged, and this way the infestation would rise.

– Weeds in The Garden

Many plants that attract bugs are primarily weeds, and this is because these have big leaves that the bugs hide in or tasty plant sap that the aphids prefer feeding on. If these weeds grow in the same garden as your Brussels and are infested by aphids, the bugs could easily migrate to your vegetables.

Besides housing aphids, weeds in the vegetable garden also lead to plant weakness. They are prone to go to the place where weeds are fresh and plenty, because it would be easy for them to grow as they have found weeds nearby to feed on.

These unwanted vegetation compete for water and nutrients with the vegetables, leaving them to survive on the least nutrients. This causes plant stress, and you could find other insects like flea beetles on brussel sprouts.

– High Nitrogen Levels

Nitrogen is an essential nutrient to plants, especially vegetables, and aphids are the bugs that prefer nitrogen. The nutrient is necessary because it helps with the growth of big leaves and big brussel heads for bigger yields, and as you place fertilizer rich in this mineral, it would give ethem an open door to infest.

When there are high nitrogen levels, the leaves grow bigger, making them admirable to aphids. The nutrient also causes continuous plant growth by constantly supporting photosynthesis, producing plant growth energy. These new leaves also attract bugs because of their easy-to-extract plant sap.

And since bugs cause slow damage to plants, can you eat brussel sprouts with aphids? Whether to feed on vegetables with aphids depends on your preference. When you harvest brussel, wash them before cooking, or use a natural bug spray for brussel sprouts before harvesting the heads to kill the aphids.

– Lack of Insect Predators

Beneficial insects like ladybugs, wasps, and hoverfly larvae are essential to every vegetable grower because they protect the plants from aphid attacks. These insects feed on the aphids without destroying the crops, killing them, and stopping the damage. They also kill aphid eggs and larvae to control their population.Lack of Insect Predators

Lack of insect predators in the garden can cause aphid infestation, and this will give them the freedom to grow without any hinderance. This means that the aphids will attack and multiply without control. Introducing these good insects to your vegetable garden helps minimize destructive insect attacks and keep the plants healthy.

– Changes in Seasons

If you just noticed aphids on your Brussels, it could be because of the seasons’ change. These tiny insects hide during the freezing winters and scorching summers and will show up in large numbers from spring to fall.

During this time, the temperatures are more favorable and support insect reproduction, and they will find your crops and lay eggs in them. While you cannot stop the seasons from changing, you can protect your Brussels from the oncoming aphid infestation in many ways.

How To Get Rid of Aphids on Brussel Sprouts

You can get rid of aphids on Brussels sprouts by removing them by hand or using pesticides and flushing them with water. You can also apply neem oil, and insecticidal soap, introduce beneficial insects, grow aphid-repelling plants, prune the affected parts, reduce the amount of nitrogen, and remove the weeds.

Introducing insect predators is one of the biological methods to remove aphids from Brussels. These are other vital insects that feed on aphids and destroy their eggs and larvae. The chemical methods include using pesticides and other less harsh substances like insecticidal soaps and neem oil.

– Remove Aphids With Your Hands

Are worms in brussel sprouts safe to eat? Worms carry different infections to vegetables, making them unsafe to feed on. You can prevent worms and aphids from spreading to other plant parts by collecting and squashing them with your hands, so note that this is a natural aphid removal method that does not have side effects.

However, when removing the aphids, don’t scrub them between the leaves. The friction between the leaves causes wounds, which opens the plant up to infections. Instead, pick the insects using a paper towel and squish them between your fingers, and this is done best for a small infestation. When removing the insects, check both sides of the leaf not to leave some behind.

– Use Pesticides

If there is a heavy cabbage aphid infestation, you can use pesticides to eliminate them. These are made using strong chemicals that kill insects instantly but negatively affect the environment. The chemicals can also kill other beneficial organisms like earthworms, improving soil health.Using Pesticides on Plants

Although pesticides kill aphids, they can take some time before a complete elimination. Therefore, you should repeat the application until all the insects are dead, and don’t burn the leaves.

– Flush Them With Water

You can use water if you want more natural ways to remove aphids on cauliflower. Spray the insects with water at high pressure on the leaves and the entire plant. Since they are weak, the water sweeps them away, and they could also drown in the little pools under the plants.

Spraying aphids with water doesn’t have side effects on the plant, but too high pressure can damage the leaves. You should also leave the stagnant water under the Brussels to dry to prevent overwatering of the vegetables.

When spraying the aphids with water, ensure you reach to upper and lower parts of the leaves and the stems. Spray on the heads to remove all the insects without overwatering the crops.

– Use Insecticidal Soap

If the clear water doesn’t work on the insects, add dish soap to make insecticidal soap. When the soapy water lands on the insect bodies, it dehydrates them, leading to death. The soap also blocks the insect’s skin, preventing breathing and suffocating them.

However, this soap has some potential effects on plants. It can injure the leaves and stems, showing yellow or brown spots, so ensure you rinse the plants with clean water after soap application to avoid the effects.

– Apply Neem Oil

If the soapy water does not work, apply oil to the leaves and stems. You can use a spray pump to spray the oil on the plant, as the oil makes it harder for aphids to feed on the leaves by acting as a repellant.

When the oil gets into contact with the insect skin, it blocks their breathing pores suffocating them. The oil also smoothers the aphids, killing them. You can substitute the oil with essential oils that can remove them.

– Introduce Beneficial Insects

A lack of insect predators can cause an aphid infestation in your brussel garden, but you can prevent this by introducing insects. You can buy these predators from the nearest plant shop. But, you must have lacewing and ladybug attractive plants to keep the essential insects to feed on them.

Once the predators are in your garden, they feed on the aphids, killing them and stopping crop destruction. The insects also destroy aphid eggs and larvae, stopping growth in the population. A small aphid population is easy to eliminate.

– Grow Aphid-Repelling Plants

While some plants attract aphids, they cannot stand others, and the plants with strong scents like garlic and onions are aphid repelling. When grown together with Brussels sprouts, aphids will not attack your garden and they will keep out.Growing Aphid Repelling Plants

However, not all aphid-repelling plants are good companions of them. Some compete for nutrients with the vegetables, causing Brussels to struggle. Therefore, ensure you choose the best aphid-repelling plants that are also good brussel companions.

– Prune the Affected Parts

Sometimes aphid attacks can cause tremendous damage. If a particular brussel plant has suffered huge aphid effects, like a rotting or infected branch, prune it to avoid more trouble. Leaving these branches and other infected parts can continue spreading the insects to other plants.

– Reduce Nitrogen Fertilization

Nitrogen is an essential nutrient but causes aphid problems in high amounts. You can prevent attacks by insects by stopping nitrogen fertilization. Lower nitrogen levels also reduce the production of new plant leaves. When no fresh, newly produced leaves exist, aphids will not have readily available food.

– Remove Weeds

Weeds are a significant cause of aphids on plants. When you remove the weeds, these insects won’t have a hiding place which forces them to flee to other areas.

You can remove weeds by uprooting and burning them to kill all the aphids. Other gardeners prefer spraying unwanted plants with weed killers, although these cause soil and environmental pollution.


Aphids attack brussel plants because of many reasons, so in short:

  • It could be because your vegetables are weak due to plant infections, lack of proper growth requirements, weeds growing nearby, high nitrogen levels, or seasonal changes.
  • You can remove aphids on Brussels by spraying them with pesticides, removing them by hand, or applying oil and soapy water.
  • Most gardeners use the easiest and cheapest aphid removal methods, like spraying water, handpicking the insects, or introducing ladybugs to feed them.

You can use control methods with stringer chemicals like pesticides to remove aphids or choose one with fewer chemicals like soapy water, and keep them out.

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