Holes in leaves

bhaFaMay 8, 2012

I see irregular holes in leaves of all my plants. The plants are of different kinds: few rose plants, few tomato plants, a green chili plant. I do not see any insects on these plants. What can I do to find the type of insect that is eating these leaves and how to control it?


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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

I'll suggest that you go out into the gardens after dusk, with a flashlight. Many chewing pests can be found easier after dark. Get in there with your hands, turning the leaves upside down and examining stems, etc.

    Bookmark   May 8, 2012 at 10:27PM
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I have it too. Could it be caterpillars, do they do that?

    Bookmark   May 9, 2012 at 11:24PM
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As a rule any caterpillar that might be munching on plant leaves will stay put and not wander off. However, slugs and snails will do that. Irregular holes suggest slugs or snails because most beetles, or bees, that would munch on leaves usually leave fairly neat, round holes. Some of the images on the web site linked are pretty extreme examples.

Here is a link that might be useful: Slug/snail damage to plant leaves

    Bookmark   May 10, 2012 at 7:25AM
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JimR36(5b CO)

Pests sure do like tomatoes. That always seems to be favorite of the various plants that I grow.

There are potentially multiple pests causing the holes in the leaves. rhizo_1's right about looking under the leaves. If you just look at the top, you'll probably miss most of them.

I mostly encounter caterpillars doing the damage, but do see damage also from various beetles and sawflies.

Look around the plants, including underside of the leaves, and at different times of the day (and night). If you see anything, take pictures. That will get you going in the right direction.

    Bookmark   May 10, 2012 at 12:25PM
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