Japanese Beetles and datura

tainalitwak(z6/7MD)April 8, 2005

Help! I have had a row of raspberries decimated 2 years running by Japanese beetles. Have been told that datura planted right next to the berrybushes should keep the beetles away.

Yesterday I mail ordered 2 Angle trumpet plants (Brugmansia suaveolens and another sp.) by mistake, thinking they were Datura also. Only now did I see they are a different genus.

Anyone know if they will have the same effect on the beetles? The Brugmansia get tall enough to "protect" the berry bushes whereas the Datura sp. I've seen for sale gets only 3'tall.

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One of my roses was covered with Japanese beetles last year, but after a while they left or were eaten or something. The rose was fine.

What I discovered was that my next-door neighbor had one of those beetle bags just on the other side of my fence. They work by attracting the beetles, which is just not the thing to do. I told her about that and asked her to at least move the bag to the other side of her property (I offered her some plants at the same time to sweeten the deal) and after she did that I had no more problems with Jap beetles.

I firmly believe that the more organic we become, the more sustainable our ecology becomes and the less likely it is that one thug or the other will take over. Good luck.

    Bookmark   April 10, 2005 at 7:07AM
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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

Well, I can't tell you about the JB and Datura in particular, but in general those beetles love all of the plants in the Solanaceae family (of which Datura is a member).

    Bookmark   April 11, 2005 at 4:49PM
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I'm trying tansy this year. I read somewhere that it repels the beetles. It should get tall enough for your berries.

    Bookmark   April 19, 2005 at 6:17PM
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whitejade(z5 MI)

I read your post and imediately wondered how many years you have had the raspberry plants there??? As in, if over 2 years and yet they are being decimated only in the PAST 2 years then that could be a clue to tired soil or some micromineral that is missing !
just a thought ....

by the way, last year I had some datura family weeds come up and the beetles DID eat those I noticed .

    Bookmark   May 12, 2005 at 1:07PM
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dtgardengirl(5b Indpls)


I seem to recall that bramble fruit, raspberries, are the only biennaial fruits. I think this means pruning out the old growth, where the berries were hanging this year. I can't grow them in my shade so I didn't pay as much attention as I should. (Check your local extention office for info.)

For Japanese beetles, a "target plant" or a "sacrifical plant", in my case, Purple Sand Cherry, and Cisterna Plum, seem to be VERY attractive to them. As they are so attracted to these plants, they seem to leave the rest more-or-less alone. The shrubs have already bloomed before they emerge and rebound each spring without seeming damage, though they are skeletonized by the beetles. This was a lesson taught by nature and observation over a few years.

On the beetles, mine seem to love purple leaved plants and New Guinea Impatien flowers especially. If the New Guinea blossoms are problems, I either disbud and allow for no flowers for a few weeks, or move them into the screened porch (if in containers.) Two "purple/maroon" plants they don't seem to bother are Persian Shield (Strobolanthes), and Red Thread althernanthera, as well as grasses.

Good luck with your berries. There is a new type out, on a limited basis, I think called "Ever-Cane", that may be a good choice. I cannot find the newsletter that mentioned this variety, but think it may have been Missouri State. I hope you enjoy lots of berries this year.

    Bookmark   June 20, 2005 at 7:42PM
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I had a volunteer datura (discolor) show up in the middle of one of my beds 2 years ago. While I don't recall seeing any JB's on them, it certainly didn't repel them from the bed. They still went to town on everything else, especially the buddleia right next to it...

    Bookmark   June 24, 2005 at 2:47PM
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I found a japanese beetle eating a marigold today!

    Bookmark   July 8, 2005 at 6:26PM
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