As their name suggests, tortoise beetles look like miniature turtles, though they only measure 1/4 inch in length. Tortoise beetles are not a common garden pest, though they may occasionally show up on tomatoes plants where they'll chew holes in both the tomato fruit and the plant's foliage. Remove and kill tortoise beetles on your tomato plants to preserve your crop's health and appearance.
Fill a bucket with soapy water. Place the bucket under your tomato bush or vine.
Shake the tomato plant vigorously. This dislodges the tortoise beetles, drowning them in the soapy water.
Keep the beetles from returning. Shoot down the tomato plant with a strong jet of water every time you water the plant. This deters the beetles from congregating on your tomatoes.
Apply a chemical insecticidal soap intended for general insect control, such as those formulated with neem oil and available from all nurseries and garden stores. Mist the soap on all exposed surfaces of your tomato plant to kill tortoise beetles and other bugs upon contact.
Things You Will Need
- Liquid dish soap
- Water hose
- Insecticidal soap
- Tortoise beetles are rarely present in enough quantity to cause any considerable damage to your garden plants, and insecticides are rarely used against the bugs, according to the University of New Hampshire.
- Orange & Black Garden Beetles
- The Height of an Average Tomato Plant
- Kill White Flies on Tomato Plants
- What Insects Attack Tomato Plants?
- Are Basil Plants Poisonous to Cats?
- Make Organic Pepper Spray for Plants
- Keep Bugs Off My Tomato Plants
- Keep Chipmunks Away From My Tomato Plants
- Get Rid of Leaf Miners on Tomato Plants
- Start Tomato Plants Indoors
- Companion Plants for Asparagus
- Kill Bugs on Tomato Plants