With some insects, only professional pest management will do

  • Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Prevention and protection are the only way to be successful in controlling certain pests. Boring insects, sod webworms, “the nasty rascal, the chinch bug,” roaches and termites are just a few more.

Borers are generally moths or beetles as adults. They fly around and lay eggs on leaf petioles (where the little stem that comes off a leaf attaches to the main stem), cracks in the bark, or wounds in the plant. Generally, when the egg hatches, a larva emerges and tunnels inside the twig, tree, or vine. The larva is the part of the life cycle that does the damage. Since larva get inside the tree, it makes it very difficult to control with spray or dust applications. The borer overwinters as a larva and emerges generally in the spring as an adult.

Treating the tree (not a fruit, nut or vegetable producing tree) with a systemic product like Dominion or Safari as a ground drench as well as spraying the tree to protect the tree from adults that are laying eggs and an oil product to suffocate eggs is a good strategy for high value trees. Depending on the borer, you would target your spraying when the adults are active (usually in the spring).

Prevention is critical with borers because once they are inside the tree or plant, the plant protects them.

Pest management professionals do a great job of protecting our homes from termites. You would not want to watch your house get eaten up then think, “hey, I might have a problem with my house. The second story toilet just fell through the floor with my mother-in-law on it.”

Termites do a lot of damage very quickly. The cost of protecting your house to prevent the damage is very low. If you have a reputable pest management professional do the work, their insurance should cover any damage unless you violated the contract (example – added on a porch and did not let them know).

Termites are one insect that should be left to a professional to control. Termites attack what is generally our highest price asset – our home.

While working in my yard last night, I did see a few sod webworm moths. They’re back.

Always read, understand and follow product label. The product label is a federal law.

Bill Lamson-Scribner can be reached during the week at Possum’s Landscape and Pest Control Supply. Possum’s has three locations including one at 481 Long Point Rd. Bring your questions to a Possum’s location, or visit us at http://www.possumsupply.com. You can also call in your questions to “The Garden Clinic,” Saturdays from noon to 1 p.m. on 1250 WTMA. The Horticulture Hotline is available 24 / 7 at possumsupply.com.

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