The Q&A Archives: White Substance On Dogwood Bushes

Question: I have two variegated dogwood bushes that are ten feet apart. They both have white foam looking substance on the leaves. What is it?

Answer: The first thing that comes to mind is spittlebugs. These are really tiny fellas that feed by sucking the juices out of stems and leaves. They protect themselves from predators by manufacturing a bubbly foam that disguises them, and makes them appear larger than they really are. Spittle Bugs can be hosed off plants with a strong stream of water. You can squish them between your fingers, if you'd prefer. They're not as damaging to plants as some of the other insects out there, but they don't make things in the garden look very appetizing! Go after them with a strong stream of water.

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