The Japanese Beetle has been a prominent pest of the eastern U.S. since the early 1900’s. In the past few years, several communities along the Front Range have seen permanent, reproducing populations of this beetle become established. Adult beetles can rapidly defoliate flowers and the leaves on many landscape plants including garden fruits and vegetables. On leaves, a characteristic feeding pattern, known as skeletonizing in which the softer tissue is removed in between the larger leaf veins, will help to identify the damage inflicted by this beetle.
Adult beetles may be treated with several different insecticides depending on the affected plant and landscape setting. Due to the broad spectrum nature of these insecticides, treatments cannot be applied to flowers or while plants are flowering when honeybees or other pollinators are likely to be present. For this reason, Elk Creek Lawn and Tree Care uses a pollinator friendly insecticide which may be applied to plants in flower and also provides up to 21 days of residual activity. Treatment of the beetle larvae if present in the lawn will also help to disrupt the life cycle of this insect.
While Japanese adult beetles feed on the blossoms and leaves of many commonly grown plants, some of their favorite plants include: Virginia Creeper, many Rose varieties, Grape vines, Raspberries, Crabapple trees, Apple trees, American Linden trees and American Elm trees.
Elk Creek Lawn and Tree Care does recommend using Japanese beetle traps on your property as this will actually increase the amount of Japanese beetles in the landscape.