Precision Lawn Care, Inc. June 2012
Spring Pests have Sprung
The 4th warmest winter on record is to blame for an early onslaught of pest this year as well as a lot of other things. The early arrival of warm weather meant an unusually early start to allergy season. Authorities say snake bites are on the rise in Georgia after the mild winter. One blogger even blamed the loss of her husband on the mild weather, seems he can't stay away from the golf course!
This spring appears to be a banner year for pests. While fire ants, fleas, ticks and mosquitoes are out in force our concern as a landscape company are those insects and diseases that affect your plants. There seems to be a plethora of pests that were able to survive the warm winter. Some of the most common insects are scale, whiteflies, Lace bugs, garden aphid, Leafminers, and Japanese Beetles. Some of the most prevalent diseases affecting plants this season are black sooty mold and black spot.
We first want to assure our maintenance customers who are enrolled in our tree and shrub program that we are already on top of this problem for you! An early treatment of horticultural oil spays should have worked to suffocate many of the pests that were able to overwinter on your plants. A treatment of Systemic Insecticides will take care of most of those which escaped. Systemic Insecticide allows us to treat the soil or trunk of a tree and the insecticide protects the tree and kills invading pests from the inside out! This works great on a wide range of insect pests including white grubs, ants and even termites.
The following information is provided for identification information only, we will be posting additional information on our blog. Three older articles on the site are available to help you define and eliminate your pest problems:
Aphids are the most common garden pest insect. They feed on both garden crops and ornamental plants. There are many different species of aphids that in essence "specialize" in feeding on different types of plants, everything from pine trees to your strawberries.
Generally, if you see one aphid, there are lots more to be found as well. Aphid colonies may be found on young leaves, new succulent shoots, and twigs or branches. When the number of aphids on a plant is very high for an extended period, their feeding can cause wilting and sometimes even dieback of shoots and buds. Some aphids can cause leaf curling when the insect infests emerging leaves.
Aphids feed by using special mouthparts to pierce plant tissues and suck the sap out of tender plant shoots and leaves. During this time these insects excrete large amounts of a sticky, sugary substance commonly called "honeydew". The excreted honeydew coats leaves, stems, and fruit, stimulating the growth of sooty mold. With a big enough infestation of aphids, leaves below the aphid colony begin to grow fungi from the aphid honeydew, this is black and brown in color and called sooty molds, these molds cover leaves and other objects below aphid colonies where the honeydew collects. To get rid of the sooty mold requires getting rid of the aphids.
A few of the other insects we are seeing now are:
If you see any of these pests on your trees and shrubs make sure to call us right away! Check our blog for additional information on these and other pests.