The Q&A Archives: Red Lily Beetles

Question: I have tiny red bugs that are eating only the leaves of my Lilly plant how do I get rid of them it seems like they were in the soil around the plant too.They have not touched any other plants .

Answer: The adult red lily beetle is a bright-red beetle with black head and legs. The beetle larvae have dirty orange-red bodies with black heads; they are more rounded than the beetle. The larvae could be mistaken for bird droppings (nice hiding technique) as they cover themselves with their own slimy black excreta. As long as they get adequate food, (lilies) they?ll mature long and then they drop off the lily to pupate in the soil. Use diatomaceous earth sprinkled around the soil beneath your lilies. This powder is reputed to work on the red lily beetle by giving it lots of tiny cuts and the insect dies from dehydration. Neem oil based insecticides are quite effective when it hits the red lily beetle. Note that it must be reapplied regularly as water (dew or rain) will wash it off the leaves. Best wishes with your lilies.

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