The Q&A Archives: japanese beatles

Question: We have just recently planted 3 new trees. I have just noticed that they all have 5-10 japanese beatles on them. I am worried that the beatles will hinder there growth or kill them. What can I do, other than put up a beatle trap, to try and stop the beatles from destroying our new trees?

Answer: Beetle traps tend to attract more beetles to the area than they catch so they are not a good solution unless you have a very large property. If there are just a few beetles per tree you can knock them into soapy water, they tend to be most sluggish early and late in the day. Or, you can try to repel them using a spray containing neem. Carbaryl, the ingredient in Sevin, will kill the beetles but it is a contact insecticide and has no residual action. Be sure to carefully read and follow all of the label directions for any product you use. A limited amount of beetle damage will not kill the trees, but you do want to prevent them being defoliated completely.

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