The Q&A Archives: Grunbs in Peppers

Question: Suddenly all of the jalepenos plants have these off white to yellow grub-like creatures. The biggest one was maybe 1/4 inch. Is there any way to eliminate this problem without using chemicals?

Answer: The pepper weevil, a 1/8 inch long, brass-colored beetle with a brown snout, and its 1/4 inch long larva, a white worm with a beige head, can cause problems with peppers. The larvae feed on the insides of fruits, causing the peppers to rot and drop off. There are also pepper maggots that cause problems with peppers. The adults are yellow flies and the larvae are yellow, peg-shaped worms. They, too, feed on the fruits of pepper plants. Destroy any infected fruits, and if the feeding continues to be a problem, use a floating row cover to protect your plants. Check the undersides of the leaves and remove any egg masses you find. Finally, remove and destroy all pepper plant debris this fall and plant your peppers in a different spot in the garden next year so overwintering eggs won't hatch and start munching on your peppers again.

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