Tuesday, June 7, 2011

In the Garden: Leaf Damage in Your Garden?

We are going to shift gears into gardening today for an important post about Winter Moths, the damage they do and how to prevent it.

If the leaves on your trees look like this or worse, you most likely have an infestation of Winter Moth:

Winter Moths have become a HUGE problem in this area in the last few years.  Depending on the tree type and its health, defoliation and repeated defoliation can severely stress a tree, or even kill it within just a few years. Defoliation also puts trees at risk for secondary pests and diseases.  Trees that are particularly susceptible include Oak, Apple, Maple, Blueberry, Basswood, Ash, Crabapple, Cherry, White Elm and Spruces, though our local nursery has been seeing spreading damage to other nearby trees and plants too. 

Here is the caterpillar culprit:

Here is the moth:

Our local garden center, Mahoney's, has recommended using Captain Jack's Deadbug.  I have personally used it and it does seem to work.  Follow the instructions very carefully because no matter how "environmentally friendly" this is, it is still a chemical.  More importantly, this can also kill bees so be sure to spray trees that are NOT in flower and only in the late afternoon/early evening when the bees are not present. 

I hope this information helps!!  You can read the UMASS Extension report for more information.

Good luck!

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