I hate Japanese Beetles! (pics)

iahawkz4(z5 IA)July 18, 2011

I know they don't kill the trees but it's so disappointing to see the beautiful, lush, green growth on my 3 Metasequoia Glyptostroboides and my 1 Taxodium Distichum get devoured by these swarming little pests. The only joy I get is squashing them or drowning the little sh*ts in a bucket of soapy death water!

The pics don't show how orange the devoured foliage looks...I knnow they'll recover just fine...I just hope someome comes up with a solution to the beetles someday..

my 3 Metasequoia below

Taxodium

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ken_adrian Adrian MI cold Z5

who sprayed your lawn??? any applications by professionals???

i am skeptical that beetles can do that to two trees .. of that size .... but i never lived thru a biblical plague ....

ken

    Bookmark   July 18, 2011 at 4:57PM
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toronado3800 Zone 6 StLouis(6)

Wow! I get some damage on mine but nothing that severe. Even if the damage on my Ogon is ugly it is only a few needles.

How do the rest of the plants around the neighborhood fare?

Perhaps my area is just a target rich environment with a few other lines of tasty broadleaf trees to choose from besides my two metasequoias.

    Bookmark   July 18, 2011 at 4:59PM
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whaas_5a(5A SE WI)

I really hope you where on vacation! Gotta get out there and hunt them down before they become such an issue.

    Bookmark   July 18, 2011 at 5:09PM
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iahawkz4(z5 IA)

nothing sprayed on the lawn...I'm an organic lawn guy...temps have been in mid 90's with no rain for 2+ weeks..

I do water my lawn but I don't always get out to the perimeter where the trees are (I do water my trees when they're under beetle attack).

The beetles skeletonize my roses, metasequoia, taxodium and flowering crab. They chomp to a lesser extent on my swamp white oak and river birch along with some annuals (sweet potato vine and impatiens).

This is actually a pretty typical year of beetle damage in my landscape....at least they leave my other conifers alone!

Am I the only one with beetle damage this bad? (I'm in Eastern Iowa in the Iowa City area).

    Bookmark   July 18, 2011 at 6:34PM
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iahawkz4(z5 IA)

I picked them off the little trees for a while but there must be 1000's in the big trees...way too many to fight..

I have to make sure I don't pick up any hitchhiking beetles in my shirt or in my hair each time I go outside. Nothing like feeling a little pinching on your neck when you're inside only to discover a beetle is under your collar!

    Bookmark   July 18, 2011 at 7:15PM
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kenptn(z6b TN)

iahawkz4- Have the beetles just moved in, or are they established? When I moved to TN 26 years ago there were no beetles here. Then about 10 years ago they arrived out of the blue with a vengeance. The first couple years there were no apples or peaches or grapes due to defoliation. My redwoods and larches and to a lesser extent baldcypress took big hits. Growth was actually slowed on the redwoods and larches. I almost gave up on crapemyrtles, the beetles ate the leaves, then the flower buds, and when the buds regrew, they got eaten again. For two years I saw no blooms. But gradually the plague has lessened, and I haven't given up growing anything. This year they are just a minor pest. Of course being surrounded by several hundred acres of grass doesn't help.

    Bookmark   July 18, 2011 at 7:18PM
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toronado3800 Zone 6 StLouis(6)

I spray freshly transplanted trees with some generic tree protector which lists japanese beetles. Figure the Metasequoia could be eighty foot tall one day and it better figure out how to deal with the beetles on its own.

    Bookmark   July 18, 2011 at 8:32PM
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iahawkz4(z5 IA)

kenp - the beetles have been here for at least a few years..I've been in this house for 6 years (new subdivision, bare landscapes) and our trees have only been devoured the last few years. I googled the JB's and a map showed Iowa as the farthest West point of infestation..but the map was a few years old.

I can empathize about your trees, flowers, etc. It's a bummer to see them devoured and know there's really nothing you can do about it.

    Bookmark   July 18, 2011 at 9:15PM
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hogmanay

my trees are all still rather small and they hit the apples first, then the dawn redwoods and bald cypress

last year I took excess hot peppers and made a spray that I applied every day to run them off... it barely worked

This year we had them so bad I had to break down and get the hose-sprayed pre-mix chemicals. One application and they went elsewhere.

We went out to catch them by hand one morning and captured about 175 on four apple trees in about an hour -- that's when I went chemical :-(

    Bookmark   July 18, 2011 at 9:55PM
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whaas_5a(5A SE WI)

If you don't plan to control them at the grub stage, which can be quite impossible as evident with kenptn suggesting the amount of turf present, you may need to diversify your plantings.

By the way JB can kill trees. They may not be the knockout punch but they can stress trees to the point where other diseases and pests come along.

I'd consider your damage borderline severe.

    Bookmark   July 18, 2011 at 10:07PM
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lou_midlothian_tx(z8 DFW, Tx)

For some reason, I had not seen much of JBs for the past 2 years. for 2 or 3 years prior to that, they were everywhere but they did not really cause much damage. Just very annoying bugs that can't fly straight.

Interestingly, past two years, bagworm Infestation got really bad. I watched a neighbor's bald cypress literally go completely bald.

    Bookmark   July 19, 2011 at 6:29PM
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maple_grove_gw

I used to have problems with Japanese Beatles. Then my neighbors all started putting up those beatle bags. Now every year, the beatles all flock to my neighbors' yards, in pursuit of the chemical attractant in the bags. My yard is left relatively untouched.

If your yard is large enough, maybe you could put a bag in a distant corner, as far from your trees as possible. Beats picking them by hand and drowning them in soap solution.

    Bookmark   July 20, 2011 at 12:06PM
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whaas_5a(5A SE WI)

I found one on my Cornus mas last night. I actually decapatated it and laughed like a little kid. Why bother drowning them, that is a waste of water and soap.

    Bookmark   July 20, 2011 at 1:19PM
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iahawkz4(z5 IA)

I like to drown a bunch of them in the bucket of soapy death water and eventually pour the whole putrid, stinky mess into my compost pile. The finished compost is eventually used around my roses...so I guess it's a little bit of sweet revenge?

    Bookmark   July 20, 2011 at 9:48PM
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