Summer Insects

on Jun 23 in Yard News

The sun is out and summer is upon us. With warm temperatures come the creepy crawly insects. Bugs can directly harm your landscape. We want to bring your attention to a couple of these little critters to look out for in your landscape this summer.

One pest to look for this month is Japanese beetles. Around the beginning of June is when you will see this beetle coming out of the ground.
Japanese beetle photo: Japanese Beetle Japbeetle.jpgThis insect flies around and loves to devour your beloved Crepe Myrtles, Roses, Plum trees, Japanese maples, Cherry trees, and red buds. They typically feed between the leaf veins, giving the foliage a skeletonized look. A good way to guard your plants is to kill the beetles in grub form before they emerge out of the soil. You can also kill them by spraying a contact pesticide or a systemic chemical that lingers within the plant. Typically you can find these pesticides at your home depot or local garden store.

Another pest to look for is Bag Worms.

Thyridopteryx.ephemeraeformis.caterpillar.jpgThey are commonly seen during the late summer months. Bag worms typically target conifers such as arborvitae, spruce, juniper, cedar, and Leyland cypress.

You also want to be wary of Lecanium Scale.
NC State - LECANIUM SCALES image These nasty little guys are often hard to see as they will blend in with the bark on your plants, and don’t move much. They typically feed on sap of your woody ornamental trees. Scale will secret a liquid waste called “honeydew”. This sugary discharge will then make the plant more susceptible to sooty mold fungus. Scale spends the winter on twigs and branches in an immature nymphal stage. Development resumes in the spring and mature females produce large numbers of eggs which are protected by their soft waxy covering. Crawlers that hatch from these eggs and move to leaves, settle, and feed on sap during the rest of the summer. They move back to twigs and branches prior to leaf drop and settle for the winter. Proper timing of insecticides is vital to controlling scale. Applications should target the crawlers as they are actively moving during the during the early summer months (June and July). Once they settle in their feeding spot, they secrete a waxy protective covering that makes it difficult to have an effect on them with sprays.

Written by Tony Gregory

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