Euonymous Scale?

oberciAugust 21, 2012

Sigh... I just started gardening and I feel like 90% of what I'm doing is identifying pests/diseases and figuring out how to treat them. Our home was vacant for a year and a half before we bought it and the garden was kind of neglected, although it doesn't look too bad...until you get up close and personal with the plants. Can;t wait to get everything under control so I can actually get to the fun stuff.

From what I can gather from searching google, it looks like what I have on several of my Euonymous varieties outside is "Euonymous Scale". Can someone on here possibly confirm this? What do I do to treat it?

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ken_adrian Adrian MI cold Z5

i simply got rid of all my plants.. after years of shortening my life with chemicals ... i suggest you skip all the remedies.. and simply get rid of them ...

consider it a lesson learned.. and have no problem destroying PROBLEM PLANTS..

there is a world of opportunity for replacement ... and you have better things to do.. than mess around with these things ...


    Bookmark   August 22, 2012 at 8:16AM
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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

There's no question about what I would do. Off with their heads! You have a VERY bad infestation of a VERY difficult to control pest on a VERY susceptible plant species.

Listen to Ken.

    Bookmark   August 22, 2012 at 8:42AM
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ken_adrian Adrian MI cold Z5


when i was a new homeowner.. i thought.. wowww .. free plants.. and then spent 3 times their value on chemicals.. 5 years later.. i am wondering what part of free was a deal.. lol ...

so.. unlike me.. dont waste 5 years messin with them ...

an empty space.. is an opportunity.. for you to make your own mistakes.. rather than spend years messin with the prior owners mistakes..


    Bookmark   August 22, 2012 at 9:40AM
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Yes, it's definitely scale. You asked how to treat it and I see the other postings are advising you to pull them out. Since you asked how to treat it, here is the answer to your question: Carbaryl(Sevin), malathion and permethrin are all readily available and should be used during the growing season. Dimethoate (Cygon) is also highly effective but is no longer avaiable retail unless you know someone who works in a commercial nursery.
In areas where available, Disulfoton is another effective chemical which is spread around the roots where it dissolves and is absorbed by the plant this making the juice inside poison to the scale. Finally in late winter when the plant is still dormant, you can use dormant oil spray.
I have successfully rescued and saved 2 very large Euonymous shrubs from heavy scale infestations using the above methods and still to this day the plants are thriving. Having said that, I do agree with the person who said they are problems...While I won't plant new ones, the ones I do have I am going to help when needed, not just rip them up and throw them away!

    Bookmark   August 23, 2012 at 6:11PM
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I'm thinking I may just leave them in until they look bad, because at the moment, they are still aesthetically pleasing. And I figure, I may as well leave something there until I know what to replace them with. I'd love to hear suggestions for any other Chartreuse bushes (like the last pic), or any other vine-type plants that have similar color/foliage to the one above (first 2 pics).

I am tempted to try the Disulfoton, but won't it harm beneficials in the soil?

    Bookmark   August 23, 2012 at 7:44PM
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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

Thankfully, disulfoton is banned for nearly all uses. It is one of the deadliest chemical once available for homeowner use. A quick google simply using that single name will tell you all you need to know. As a matter of fact, I suggest that you research all of the chemicals mentioned. Most environmentally people would get rid of the infested plants rather than use such an arsenal of products.

Now, if this outbreak were not so advanced I would have mentioned that you begin treatments with horticultural oil. It is still the most recommended recourse for scale insects....and without the collateral damage.

By the way, all of those chemicals are harmful to beneficial soil critters of many kinds...including essential soil microorganisms, earthworms, and more.

    Bookmark   August 23, 2012 at 8:32PM
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Actually, How do I know if this is a current infestation or the remnants of an old one? Because I've actually had the plant like this since January and it's still growing well and the leaves haven't fallen off or died out.

Could I possibly wipe off the leaves or cut off the portion that has a high infestation and then spray with horticultural oil?

Also would a neem spray work?
Can I still use the infested portions in composting or do they need to be thrown out?

    Bookmark   August 24, 2012 at 12:28AM
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Carbyrl, Malathion, Permithrin (synthetic pyrethrin) are all broad spectrum poisons that will not only kill off any of the beneficials (Lady Beetles) but can cause great harm to you.
The Asian Lady Beetles were introduced in part to help control this problem. Pruning, and destroying, parts of the plant infested with the scale is the most commonly suggested means of control, followed by the, judicious, use of hprticulture oils. The attached link might provide good information about this scale.

Here is a link that might be useful: About Eunonymous Scale

    Bookmark   August 24, 2012 at 7:33AM
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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

You sure are asking some excellant questions! Good for you.

There are almost certainly generations of old and dead scale present on the plants. That's what happens with all scale species. But all those little white things are young male nymphs....which means that there's a whole bunch of activity going on, even though the small, dark females are harder to see. And active crawlers all but impossible. I clearly see large populations of females on the leaves as well as piled up along some of those stems.

This scale species has two or three generations per year, explaining why they seem to explode so suddenly. The eggs are hidden under the dark exoskeletons of the females until they hatch and emerge as the tiny crawlers. It's that crawler stage where these scale are most vulnerable. They are difficult to see.

Trying to wipe the scale from the upper and lower surfaces of the leaves as well as (and more importantly) from all the woody stems would be .......challenging, to say the least.

But heavy pruning IS a good option. This species of scale may be heaviest on the stem. Rejuvenation pruning goes very well for these plants.

I'd be remiss if I didn't mention a commonly used systemic soil drench....imidacloprid is the active ingredient in a variety of commercial products. Call your LOCAL extension office for the best advice regarding the timing of these drenches. Perhaps someone will jump in with information about how well this chemical works on this particular pest.

Neem oil is one of the commercial horticultural oils that can be effective. I'd use neem (folliw the directions on the label) until the end of summer followed by occasional winter applications of
a plain hort. oil.

If your compost pile gets very hot for long enough periods to kill the scale....fine. If not....send any clippings far away.

Since you've got the 'fighting spirit ', I'd like to see you try! I'll gladly jump on the band wagon and help. I would just like for you to remain realistic in your expectations. Don't hesitate to email me.

    Bookmark   August 24, 2012 at 7:35AM
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I never have problems controlling scale with Oil. Once in the fall once in spring and then again when crawlers hatch, but others seem to so I will give you another solution. A one time application of Dinotefuron (Safari) as a soil drench or sprayed on the stems as directed will kill this scale. Follow the label, the stem treatment is a supplemental label still I think, so you will have to Google for it. Dinotefuron is not disulfoton though they have similar names. This stuff is expensive though. Keep doing spring and fall oils and this should solve the problem of the scale building up again.
Don't waste your time and money if these plants also have Crown Gall, common on Euonymus, just get rid of them. Google crown gall.

    Bookmark   August 25, 2012 at 5:49PM
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PS. Forgot to mention this scale also gets on Pachysandra so if you have this check them.

    Bookmark   August 25, 2012 at 5:52PM
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Imidacloprid is reported to be somewhat effective for some scales but not for others. In addition there is some research that indicates it may be harmful to bees.

    Bookmark   August 26, 2012 at 7:24AM
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Disulfoton (aka Di-Syston)is still readily available. I just checked online and it is being sold by the site I normally order from and by another site. All chemicals, including "organic" ones can be dangerous. However, for small, occasional applications by a homeowner wearing the proper protection they are a helpful friend.
Tylenol is toxic to the liver and potentially deadly in high doses, yet when used as directed it can be very beneficial....same thing for garden chemicals.
So many people on here try to scare the daylights out of anyone who wants to use/suggest chemical controls and it is just plain ignorant.

    Bookmark   August 28, 2012 at 1:06AM
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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

I totally stand by my original statement about disulfoton. It is completely accurate; the active ingredient is hugely toxic. To equate its use with Tylenol is woefully disingenuous.

    Bookmark   August 28, 2012 at 7:04AM
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