European Fruit Lecanium Scale on Purple Leaved Sand Cherry

Purple leaf sand cherry (Prunus cistena) are susceptible to a large number of potential insect and disease pests. One of those insect pests is the European fruit lecanium scale (Parthenolecanium corni)  or EFS for short. This native, soft bodied scale insect primarily feeds on fruit trees, although other trees and shrubs, such as maples, can be affected. They can cause significant damage and susceptible trees and … Continue reading European Fruit Lecanium Scale on Purple Leaved Sand Cherry

Insect Pests To Be On The Lookout For In The Garden

Tent Caterpillars Tent caterpillars construct their silky tent like nests in early spring in the crotches of trees such as cherry (Prunus) and apple (Malus). They feed during the day, then at night they return to the tent for protection. Your first line of defense should be to begin looking for these nests in early spring, about the time saucer magnolia (Magnolia x soulangiana) and … Continue reading Insect Pests To Be On The Lookout For In The Garden

Springtails

Springtails (Collembola ) are anthropods within the class of hexapoda. Many specialists now classify them in a separate subclass called Entognatha due to the fact that their mouth parts are not external (like insects) but rather they are internal (or mostly so). They are named for most of the species ability to jump short distances by using their tails as a spring board. This special … Continue reading Springtails

White fluff on Pine Trunks and Branches…Pine Bark Adelgid

Pine bark adelgid (Pineus strobi) is an aphid like insect that feeds on the plant juices of white pines and occasionally Scotch and Australian pines. You are not likely to see the insect itself but rather the white cottony wax the insect covers itself with. Heavily infested tree trunks and branches can look white washed. Adelgids are native to Europe but widely occur throughout North … Continue reading White fluff on Pine Trunks and Branches…Pine Bark Adelgid

Spindle Galls; Unusual Growths On Linden Leaves Caused by Eriophyid Mites

What Are Galls? Galls are unusual growths or deformities of plant tissue caused by an organism; be it insect, nematodes, fungi, bacteria or viruses. The presence of these organisms initiates an increased production of normal plant growth hormones and these plant hormones cause localized plant growth. The gall-making organism feeds inside the gall. The appearance of the gall is unique to the gall maker and … Continue reading Spindle Galls; Unusual Growths On Linden Leaves Caused by Eriophyid Mites

Insect Pest of Boxwood…Boxwood Psyllid

Boxwood psyllid (Monarthropalpus flavus) are small, soft bodied insects that feed on the sap of boxwood. They are light green in colour and the nymphs are covered in whitish waxy secretions. These waxy secretions can make the boxwood appear to have dandruff. The nymphs feeding causes the leaves to curl over and cup; enclosing them in a protective shield safe from predators, weather and garden … Continue reading Insect Pest of Boxwood…Boxwood Psyllid

Rose Sawflies

Rose sawflies adults are small primitive wasps who’s larvae look like tiny little caterpillars. These larvae, commonly called rose slugs, are voracious feeders and feed almost exclusively on rose leaves. If their numbers are high enough they can quickly defoliate an entire rose bush. Larvae feeding damage appears as skeletonized leaves that look like window panes. As the feeding continues large holes are chewed through … Continue reading Rose Sawflies

Honey Locust Plant Bug Damage And Control

Several Honey Locust trees here in Southern Ontario have been the target of small green bugs that have been distorting honey locust leaves and in some cases partially defoliating these trees. The main culprit has been the honey locust plant bug (Diaphnocoris Chlorionis). The honey locust plant bug (Diaphnocoris chlorionis) are approximately 3mm (1/8 inch) long when full grown and light green in colour. They pierce leaf … Continue reading Honey Locust Plant Bug Damage And Control

Hydrangea Problems…Leaf-tiers

Hydrangea leaf-tiers (Exartema ferriferanum), are a small moth whose larvae, (a tiny green caterpillar with a black head), sew terminal leaves together with a silk thread. Once inside this enclosure they feed on the leaves and flower head. These leaf enclosures become wrinkled and puckered and are easy to spot on the plant. They are native to Canada and U.S.A with the majority of sightings … Continue reading Hydrangea Problems…Leaf-tiers

Boxwood Leaf Miners

Boxwood leafminers (Monoarthropalpus flavus syn. Monarthropalpus buxi) are orangish gnat like flies that are a major pest of boxwood. Their larvae, which are small worm like maggots, feed inside of boxwood leaves causing blisters and puckering on the backside of the leaf and brown blotching on the upper surface. Premature defoliation of infected leaves occurs. In large numbers they can cause extensive and unsightly damage even … Continue reading Boxwood Leaf Miners

Pine Needle Scale: Identification, Life Cycle and Control

Pine needle scale (Chionaspis pinifoliae) are very small, white, stationary insects found on the needles of pine (primarily ponderosa, mugo and scotch), spruce and occasionally, balsam fir, hemlock, and yew. They feed by inserting their stylet into the needles and sucking the juices out. This causes spotting to the branches. Badly infested trees may have a greyish appearance with needle loss. Left uncontrolled whole branches … Continue reading Pine Needle Scale: Identification, Life Cycle and Control

Mealybug Damage To Yews

Yews are a popular shrub in ornamental home gardens. Their deeply green foliage contrasts beautifully in the gardens spring, summer, fall and winter. Their slow growth habit and ability to take a hard pruning has made them a favorite for hedges and topiary for thousands of years. These beauties are also pricy and it is no wonder that homeowners want to protect their investment and … Continue reading Mealybug Damage To Yews

Viburnum Leaf Beetle

Viburnum leaf beetles (Pyrrhalta viburni), are a serious threat to many species of viburnum. They are voracious feeders with a long feeding season. Both the larvae and adults feed on viburnum leaves. The larvae skeletonize the leaves while the adults chew oblong holes in them. If their numbers are great enough they can completely defoliate a viburnum shrub, causing dieback that can lead eventually to … Continue reading Viburnum Leaf Beetle

Flea Beetle Damage to Tomato Plants

If the leaves of  your tomato plants appear as though they have been used as target practice at a rifle range, then chances are you have flea beetles. They are a common pest of tomato seedlings. Other plants that can be damaged include: peppers, melons, potatoes, corn, spinach, eggplants, radishes and members of the brassica family (like cabbage, cauliflower, broccoli and brussel sprouts). Flea beetles can be hard … Continue reading Flea Beetle Damage to Tomato Plants

Natural Insect Control In The Garden

The majority of insects you find in your garden are actually harmless and require no intervention. They are either nature’s helpers or food sources for nature’s helpers. For those insects that do pose a threat to some of your plants there are several non-invasive solutions you can utilize to prevent, monitor and control these pest insects. This approach to pest management is called IPM or … Continue reading Natural Insect Control In The Garden