Oh yes, aphids. You can spray them off with a strong hose, or sprinkle horticultural diatomaceous earth powder.
Definitely aphids. Call in the ladybugs. Or the lacewings.
@Douglas Hunt - how can you get ladybugs to come? Can you buy them?
Yes, you can buy them Joe. The thing about ladybugs, however, is that you cannot keep them around. Once they've done in the aphids, they move on to look for other food. For this reason, green lacewings may be a better choice (there are also some concerns about wild harvesting ladybugs). Here's one source:
I know in our area, they imported ladybugs from Europe. They are pests here now, and they bite!
I use food grade diatomaceous earth. I mix 1 cup per gal of water in a pump sprayer. I shake the pump a lot to keep it mixed up and spray everything even the dirt. it is very safe.. and works great. most people use a duster to apply it. goggle it and find out all the cool things it does. it even adds minerals to your soil.
yes the lady bugs have already left! is the diatomaceous earth organic? or an all natural thing? I'm trying hard to be as organic as possible
@Sarah Nave my hydrangea bush has been troubled by this, but not so much anymore. I read a tip to use a flypaper tape near the plants and aphids go to that instead of the plant. Has worked for three years now. It is cheap enough to try but you may need to hang from a bamboo stake or something. Good luck. Let us know what works for you.
@Sarah Nave make sure you get the food grade D.E. not the one used for pools. I use it with my chickens in their feed and nests to prevent pests. It isn't a poison, it coats the insect causing dehydration.