Pest Control Library: Flea Beetle

Articles→Pest Control Library

By National Gardening Association Editors

These tiny beetles earn their name by jumping like fleas when disturbed. There are many pest species with varying markings and colorations. The blue-black flea beetle shown here is most common.

  • Crucifer flea beetle. Photo by Whitney Cranshaw, Colorado State University, Bugwood.org
  • All flea beetles prefer hot, dry conditions. They cause damage by chewing tiny holes in the leaves of vegetables such as eggplant and cole crops. Seedlings are most succeptible to damage. The beetles can spread diseases such as early blight to potatoes or bacterial wilt to corn. Flea beetle larvae feed on roots of many plants. In the southwest, flea beetles are a major pest of dichondra lawns. Adults overwinter in the soil and on garden debris, emerging in early spring.

    Prevention and Control

    Eliminate overwintering sites by removing plant debris and similar hiding places in the fall. In dry climates, keep garden beds moist, making them less attractive to egg-laying adults. Cultivate soil frequently. Add parasitic nematodes to the soil to attack the larvae. Spray infested plants with insecticidal soap to reduce damage by the beetles.

    Together with Victory Seed Company:
    Victory Seed Company Logo Victory Seed Company has all the seeds you want for your best garden in 2024.

    For 25 years, the family-owned Victory Seed Company has provided the highest quality vegetable, herb and flower seeds to families across the country. We are passionate about providing you the best seeds available that give excellent germination, robust plants, and the harvest you want. With a catalog of over a thousand varieties, we have everything, and our prices are the kinds that we'd want to pay. We have hundreds of yesterday's heirloom vegetables, as well as today's award winning hybrid selections. Get to know us by visiting our website and browsing through our online vegetable seed catalog.

    This article is a part of our Pest Control Library.
    This article is a part of our Pest Control Library.
    Member Login:

    ( No account? Join now! )

    Today's site banner is by Murky and is called "Spanish Flag"

    This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.