My neighbor asked me why her squash seemingly died overnight.
Unfortunately, I had to tell her about squash vine borers (SVB). If you
grow squash in Central Texas, you are most likely familiar with this
insect and it's damage. If you have not yet had the pleasure of
encountering SVB, either lucky you or welcome to Texas or welcome to
Squash vine borer refers to a moth that lays reddish-brown eggs singly on the base of squash plants. When the eggs hatch, the larvae bore into the squash stem where they feed on the plant from the inside. So if the insect is on the inside of the plant, how can you tell if that's the problem? Typically, there is a hole in the stem where the larvae entered which has yellow sawdust-like frass coming out of it. Larvae overwinter in the soil, pupate, then emerge as adults in the spring to mate and lay eggs. Adult moths are about half an inch long with bright, contrasting colors. The abdomen is bright orange with black dots. The front wings are a greenish-black color and the hind wings are clear, but you typically don't see the hind wings as the wings are folded over the back when at rest. Damage is death of the squash vine. Usually it starts at the base of the plant and moves towards the outer parts.
On another note, have you been tuning in for the All Bugs Good And Bad FREE webinar series? If you missed one (or all for that matter), you can still listen and get great information!
Here's a link to all of the webinars for 2015.
For the webinars that have already occurred, you can click on the topic you are interested in learning more about and it will load that presentation page. At the top right corner there is a "watch recording" button. Click on that and you will be able to listen to the webinar.