What's damaging my hydrangea leaves?

SMS77June 18, 2013

About 1/3 of my hydrangea leaves have been all cut up by some insect. I found a little green insect on the leaf, about the size of an aphid, but with longer legs and walking around (couldn't figure out how to post 2 photos), but I don't know if that's what's causing this. Anyone seen leaf damage like this before? The damaged leaves eventually turn light green/yellow, then die. I want to catch it before it kills the whole plant.

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OK, here's the little insect I found on the leaf.

    Bookmark   June 18, 2013 at 5:34PM
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jean001a(Portland OR 7b)

The insect is an aphid.

The damage looks like hail damage from a while ago.

    Bookmark   June 18, 2013 at 6:26PM
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Yes, it is some sort of mechanical damage and aphids can't chew leaves.

    Bookmark   June 18, 2013 at 9:59PM
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Really, mechanical damage? I guess that is good news, if that's what it is. We don't really get a lot of hail around here, so that's surprising. We just moved into this house about a month ago though, so maybe something happened before we moved in that I don't know about. And I didn't think that aphids were quite as mobile as this little insect is. He moves sideways really fast. OK, well thanks for the input!

    Bookmark   June 18, 2013 at 11:48PM
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ken_adrian Adrian MI cold Z5

3 choices... insect... disease ... mechanical ...

so they have ruled out two ... and do understand mechanical does NOT necessarily mean a machine ...

i have had such damage on hosta.. not only from hail... but also twigs falling out of a carp tree in a wind storm.. acorn bombing.. etc ...

when gravity is involved.. its called mechanical ...


ps: any insane squirrel building a nest above???

    Bookmark   June 19, 2013 at 7:41AM
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There IS actually a large maple tree above it. There are other plants nearby (including a huge hosta) which don't have similar damage, but it does look like only the older leaves on the hydrangea were affected, so maybe some branches fell during a wind storm before the hosta sprouted this year, for example. I never would have thought of mechanical damage, and my nearby garden center didn't know was this was, so I appreciate that Garden Web came through. Thanks! And I never realized there were fast-moving aphids. I've only ever seen slow/motionless ones. But it doesn't seem like there are too many of them on the hydrangea anyway, luckily.

    Bookmark   June 19, 2013 at 11:04AM
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