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japanese beetles

Posted by emcrorie 7 - Charlotte (My Page) on
Sun, May 27, 07 at 8:42

They're baaaaaaack...
I saw the first one of the season on a magnolia blossom. *ugh* At least I have some giant tweezers to pick them off with this year :P


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: japanese beetles

You can keep them on your side of the state - Not what I wanted to hear at all - ggrrrrrrrr I at least wanted more bloom from the Hollyhocks before I had to cut them back. They will give me a second flush but not as full and pretty as the first. Oh well - I will be on the lookout for them now......

Lynne


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Worst news since the freeze. I hate them so much.

Carla


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I was HOPING to have a bit longer... I only can wish that the drought-like conditions I have had this spring have thinned the numbers a bit....

I think this year, I will try the effects of a Japanese beetle blendered-cocktail spray - it's supposed to work....


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RE: japanese beetles

  • Posted by zigzag 7b - Triangle, NC (My Page) on
    Sun, May 27, 07 at 13:58

Haven't seen any here yet (scrunching eyes tightly closed) and just hope they come early and leave early so my Crape Myrtles w/their 'had to start over after the freeze' late bloom will stand a chance this year. Fingers crossed ......


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So far they seem to not be as bad as they've been in previous years. Usually I see my first and in days I'm covered but now it is having to search around the bushes to see them still. Hopefully they'll stay small in number and will miss most of the blooms because of the late blooms.


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Haven't seen one yet but a friend who works a nearby golf course said he'd noticed the first one this week.
I'm just glad that I got a full first blooming of the roses and most of the second bloom on the carpets before the JB's come along. Hopefully the roses will be between blossom periods but that will force the JBs to other plants.
It was weird being away at the height of spring here. We left when the trees were looking their worst after the frost. Arrived back and most of the trees had time to re-leaf and bloom.
The locust I thought had died is fully in leaf and with tons of seedpods,blooming while I was gone.
Our friend's kids call it the monkey tree. The yellow pods look like the monkeys had a party and tossed all their banana skins up in the tree.
I thought I'd lost a japanese maple I'd had potted for 2 years and finally planted. Turns out it was fully leafed out ,better than ever, and hidden under poison ivy and virg. creeper that leafed out late in a new bed.
JB's are the least of my problems. I've got to make up for 3 weeks of not weeding.


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In Triangle, checked all my plants, no JB's yet. Hoping they will hold off for a week or two more so that my crape myrtle will get a chance to recover from the freeze. And as if the thrips on my roses weren't bad enough would like to get through the lame-flush before the JB's come to feast.


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I'm in the southeastern part of the state and I saw 3 of the dreaded JB's today. :(


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  • Posted by jeane 7b Garner NC (My Page) on
    Wed, May 30, 07 at 0:46

I'm with you, I hate them too. I finally broke down and bought MILKY SPORE. I would like to hear if anyone has used it?

Jeanne


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RE: japanese beetles

Dibbit, PLEASE share your beetle cocktail.
My neighbor used to pick them all off by hand from her roses.
I cannot tolerate the heat that well to want to hand pick anything unless it's dollar bills.

Carla


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carla- it does no good to try and pick them in the heat as they're too fast then. i handpick them in the morns & eves into a milk jug with the top cut off half full of water and a dollop of dishsoap (they drown very fast with the soap). if you want to be sadistic, knock them into jars with water sans soap and let them cook in the sun (jb tea! mmm). i always dump the water & bugs at the foot of a particular treat to them so as to shoo them off, but i don't know if it really works. my kids like to knock them off too. i particularly delight in finding where they are having their 'orgies' and knock off several at a time. milk jugs work well because they're wide- you just position it under the leaves with one hand, and knock them off with the other. they always fall straight down when they're cool; if it's too warm, then they fly when you get close.


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You also have to be thorough. Every time you walk around the yard you have to be on the lookout and ready to pounce on any Japanese beetle you see. The more you pick and kill the fewer there are to signal the rest of them. The plants they are eating give off chemical cues and the feeding beetles also give off chemical cues which attract more and more beetles. I pay attention to what they seem to like (changes every year) and pay lots of attention to those plants. I rarely have time to mix up soapy water so I just squish them or slam them into the pavement. I spend about 30 minutes total, checking/squishing on patrol 3 or 4 times each day until the onslaught is over (sometimes only a month).


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I've already succumbed to the torment. Last year they lasted longer and showed up earlier.

Carla


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Just went out to fill bird baths and there was one in one of them. I checked the roses and the hibiscus and haven't seen any on the plants yet. Guess it is just a matter of time.....


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Picked a couple off the New Dawn rose today - grrrrrrrrr
I have my container of soap and sevin made up and will take it with me whenever I am outside. I would LOVE to have at lease one more week of hollyhocks before I cut them down - I refuse to let the JB's tear them to shreads. Good thing is I will get a secondary bloom from them later in the season tho not as tall and majestic as they are now....

Lynne


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And I guess it's common knowledge that the "traps" don't work. If anything, they attract more beetles into the yard. I live on a street that is flanked with Crepe Myrtles and last year they were a big problem. We have two small ones in the backyard in the middle of two of the planting beds (8'x8') where a lot of my herbs are growing. Good news, they don't seem to care for herbs. At least I didn't have any trouble with them last year. They loved the trees, but didn't touch the herbs.


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I haven't seen any JBs yet but if they're not here now they will be any day. I'm too busy looking with dismay at the blister beetles -- I hate those things.


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I still haven't seen many of these little monsters this year, but then the crape myrtles aren't blooming yet. We haven't put out milky spore yet, but we did get some. I think you put it out in the fall, and possibly in spring again. Not sure. All I have done is kill all the grubs I run across when digging. Grubs - ugh. My neighbor may be using milky spore since she uses lots of natural products.


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Jeane

I have actually used milky spore and can say that it works. The thing to remember is that it kills the grub, not the beetle. The key is to to keep them from reproducing. This should work. I read that the potential problem to this is that it works too well. Once you kill the grub, the spore reproduces in the the grub and spreads, as it works, it kills itself out of a job and eventually dies. You may need to use it again in a few years.

I have used it in my raised beds and near the flowers and haven't seen a new grub in a couple years in those places. Having an acre yard keeps me from using it everywhere. Every year I should get a new serving and try to use it on a different place in the yard.


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In my yard, I usually don't see very many, hopefully this year will be the same KNOCK WOOD . Haven't seen one yet. This thread brings back memories, when I was a kid (in the stone age) my mother used to pay use kids 1 cent a piece for beetles caught in our yard. What a woman, she would go around picking them off her roses in the evening and CRUSHING them between her thumbnail and forefinger with her BARE hands! YIKES I can NOT do that.. The man across the street was an organic gardener and would pay us a DOLLAR for all toads caught and brought to his yard :-D Big Dough!


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Catching them in your bare hands! That gives me the willies. Last summer was my first experience with JB's. They disgust me. We had them really bad. I would say more like a plague. They completely covered my roses and crape myrtles. I tried using traps. I had five traps around the perimeter of the yard. I changed them every week. Each one weighed over a pound. That was at least 5 pounds a week for several weeks. This year after they arrived I cut back my roses and plan on keeping them cut back until they leave. We cut back the crape myrtles way back so hopefully they won't bloom until late. The roses and myrtles are fine but the ornamental cherry is covered with them. It's too big to spray. They were even trying out my rosemary yesterday. They must not like it, today it was clear. I'm watching my Japanese Maple close. It had such a time after the freeze. It's leafed back out, but looks thin. I guess maybe we should have a sacrifical rose garden off to the side just for them to feast on every year. I'm debating trying several traps to try to devert them from the cherry tree. I'm thinking maybe blasting the tree with the hose everyday and maybe they would go to the traps?
Does anyone know what kind of range these guys have. We live on almost 3 acres. Are the ones causing me problems from my own property or do come in from all over. I don't have any traps set right now, so I'm not attracting any that way. Our local water company has an office just a couple blocks away from our house(the way the crow flys) They have several crape myrtles that looked great all summer last year. I asked the woman at the drive up window if they treat them for JB's. She said they don't do anything to them.


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I still have not seen many compared to last year. How about the rest of you all? Theresa.


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i've seen a few, but a lot less than last year. something's tunneling up my yard with a vengeance, and i'm kind of hoping it may be moles eating the grubs. i still stomp the tunnels.

checkers, if you were suing traps you were pulling them onto your property. if you use traps put them as far away from the jb hot spots as you can, and situte them so the wind blows the scent of the lures to the beetles. they say the best thing to do is to get your neighbors to set traps so they all come to them. heh heh.


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worst season I've seen in 15 years for jb's. Not so bad on the roses but hitting the trees like choke cherry,young holly leaves and bald cypress. Doesn't help that the stepfords next door have 2 baited traps and dragging them from whichever the way the wind blows.
Guess we'll have to treat for the grubs this fall and next early spring.


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I have not seen as many as last year. During the last couple of cool days they seemed to disappear (off to a neighbor's yard because they saw me catching their friends in a cup of soapy water?) but some came back today when it got warmer. Still not very many. But we re-did our yard (added soil, beds, grass), and maybe that helped.


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I hate setting traps, they're disgusting and stink. I see how they could be attracking the neighbors bugs. We do live on acreage, so I wonder how far these guys can go. The cherry tree is getting worse by the day, I have to do something or there isn't going to be much left of it by the time they leave. It's way to big to spray or do anything directly to the beetles. That's why I figure setting several traps will hopefully lure them away from the cherry tree. I started out thinking since I cut the roses and the crape myrtles back they would head off to someone else's yard, but they are settling for the cherry tree.
I made the mistake of doing my hair this morning, spraying it with my Sap Moss hair spray and going outside to check the yard. Yikes, they like my hair spray. Retreat!


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Ok, I only found 1 this morning - what is going on? LOL
guess I can't complain but I am preplexed! I couldnt have killed them all could I?
They did seem to start mating right away rather than waiting (and munching) for 2 weeks, so maybe they sent off to lay eggs in the ground? do they die after that?
I also saw some wasps carrying around grubs - maybe they got some of them...
Jean


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Keeping fingers and legs crossed, I don't want them to hear me. I have not seen as many yet. I hope they all die of thirst! There are a couple people on the rose forums who post the most disgusting photos I've ever seen. It's a sex orgy of JB's.

Carla


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Well, I gave in and set JB traps late this morning. They were destroying the ornamental cherry. I put out three bags. Instantly they started leaving the tree and swarming all over. By the end of the day I had three completely filled bug bags. At least 4 pounds worth. Disgusting. I tend to think if you don't have a big problem with them that bags may tend to draw more into your yard. But I do think there are times when they give you a hand.


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I would think that if you use them as a short term solution and I mean like throw them out after youf tree is clear then they can be usefull. That way they can't be a lure for your neighbors population. Theresa.


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It is way too early for the real influx of JBs. No one mentioned the use of SEVIN for these cuties. SEVIN comes in a bottle that attaches directly to the end of your hose and will spray some 20 feet (for taller trees) as well as in dust form for the roses and smaller shrubs. I use the dust for anything I can reach. I try not to use sprays but this is one time I do. In the past, I have found that one spraying will usually do the trick and it saves my roses, crape myrtles and cherry trees. Sevin is a product my grandfater used 50 years ago on vegetables and it's still on the market today. Must be good and it certainly does the trick on JBs


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They've been swarming our roses and cherry trees. I couldn't bring myself to use sevin because we have so many honey bees here. I used neem oil today and hope to get some relief other than hand-picking all the time. I can easily cut back my Knock-Out roses when the feeding frenzy is over, but I can't cut back my cherry trees. They completely defoliated the weeping cherry last year. ugh.

I live in a neighborhood of open meadows (former dairy farm), so there's a huge JB habitat. I don't think I'll be able to ever talk the neighbors into using milky spore to kill off the grubs.


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Hi Passion, Alot of people don't like to use sevin because it doesn't discriminate between good bugs and bad bugs. I have been here almost three years and still see a new bug most every day ha. I remember getting a call from a frantic new gardener at work a while back. She called to say everything in her garden was being killed by aphids (if I remember correctly). I could not understand how she could have such a bad infestation that they would actually KILL all her flowers. She then told me she noticed them earlier and sprayed everything heavily with sevin (it comes in different strengths and she used a strong one). So she killed not only the bad bugs but the bugs that keep them in check and so on and so forth.

I try not to stress when things get chewed up. I have amaranthus come up every year and every year they are chewed to lace by some kind of disgusting worm. They still grow and bloom nice though so I live with it.

All that being said I think I would consider using the lowest strength of sevin if I thought those disgusting JB's were going to bring a prized (fill in the blank) into too much stress and possible death. Adele


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Saw the first ones this morning on the hollyhocks. Ugh!
Would not recommend the use of Sevin, as we already have a shortage of bees for pollination. Will hand-pick, knock off into a bucket of soapy water, use direct sprays of insecticidal soap, and try not to mind the chewed leaves. :(


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For those who don't have JBs it's because they're in MY Durham yard. Yesterday and today I must have killed 50 in my bathroom-trash-can/soapy-water, and I have a very small yard. I bang them off the plants with a dustpan (I am squeamish) right into the soapy water. I am mostly concerned about them eating my lawn so I'll treat with milky spore - there is little plant damage so far.


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wonbyherwits,
I am so glad you are trying to save the honeybees :-)
I saw some national reports that they are mysteriously disappearing all over the country in many states. NC was one of them. So sad. They are so important for fruit trees, etc. I am worried that in 5 years they will all be gone.
The scientists cannot figure out what is hurting them, so may not be able to solve the problem.


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I hate when you knock them off into the soapy dish and a couple cling on to your fingers for dear life... Good thing they don't bite - as much as I hate them, I sometimes feel a bit sad to see them swimming so hard trying to get out of the soapy water - Yuck, even though, I hate them -

Carrie


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  • Posted by zigzag 7b - Triangle, NC (My Page) on
    Wed, Jun 20, 07 at 12:04

They're ramping up here too, but my 'Garden Elves' tell me they're seeing signs of a short season - fwiw. I did sanction their spraying the most vulnerable w/ their 'magic potion', but am not sure it's working as well this year - time will tell. Meanwhile, I have morning glory/moonflowers on trellises for the first time and they're getting chomped - might have to re-think the vining climbers for next year.


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I have them bad here. We flick & stomp them everyday but they outnumber us. I used Neem Oil - that did nothing. Refuse to spray with anything else, though my neighbor did. Maybe they all left her yard & came to mine? Oh well... I can handle loosing a few leaves & their munchiness but couldn't handle loosing the bees so I guess they win.

I am curious about the milky spore though. Is this ok for beneficials? If I treat with it now will it help now or do I have to wait for next year to see the effect?


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Milky spore only works on the grubs, so it won't help for this year. I bought some, and I think it's put down in the fall, but we didn't get to do it yet.


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Re: Neem...

I don't really have a "garden" exactly, but I have some herbs and a calamondin on my balcony. I noticed the first JB on the cal shortly after seeing this thread (and would probably not have realized what they were otherwise). I had been meaning to get some Neem for the white flies on the herbs, but after losing a cal fruit to the beetles, I knew it was time to try it.
Two weeks ago, I sprayed everything, but it rained shortly afterward (and kept raining the rest of the week) and I think the Neem didn't stick. When it stopped raining, the beetles were back. I sprayed again one week ago, and I have not seen a JB since. Could be a coincidence, but I'll keep it around.


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Went to Parks flower day today & a speaker there said the only thing known to work (other than handpicking) on JB's was Bayer Advanced spray. He said that if you can spray the roots only that the tissue of the plants would absorb the chemical & then it wouldn't harm beneficials. I'm not sure how true that is but thought I would pass it along. I'm debating it but still leaning towards no chemicals.


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Please let me explain. I also do not use the siven unless it is the last possible thing. Last year I had thousands of the little cuties and finally did use Siven. I have hand picked them this year but only have a few. I talked to the Bee man at the Farmers Market and we had a great discussion abou the effent of the siven on bees. I'm seriously thinking about renting a beehive from him for my backyard, so I too LOVE the bees. I only dusted several bushes TOTALLY blasted to the point of almost NO LEAVES or FLOWERS left on the shrubs.

I put down Milky Spore last fall but it takes a year or so for that to take effect. BUT the up side of that is that it last 15 or so years. Once it takes effect, its a great product. Now I just need to get my neighbors to do the MS thing.


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Ugh!!! I FINALLY got a bud forming on my Ebb Tide Rose - and those blasted beetles ate it to a nub before I could even see color!!! Not to mention the lace work they are making from Ebb Tide's leaves. Ironically enough, I have a Hot Cocoa & a Cl. Butterscotch close by, that they have not even tasted (knock on wood). I will definitely be putting down Milky Spore... In the fall, right? I'm thinking of trying the Bayer sprayed on Ebb Tide's roots & maybe even Siven, just on the one rose they are decimating.


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I purchased some organic insecticide made with essential oils and sprayed my knockout roses with it. The beetles hated it and scattered immediately. It doesn't really kill the beetles but they are definitely avoiding my roses now so I just spray them down every couple of days. My neighbors on both sides of me also put out traps so the nasty buggers are flocking to their yards instead of mine (thanks neighbors!)


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Tell me more about this organic insecticide made with essential oils. I'm into essential oils, so that really interests me. I am suddenly covered up with jb. I've never had an infestation before, and they are trying to destroy everything that the slugs have left behind. This year's garden is a war zone at my house!


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I have a big plastic cup from taco bell (1/3 full with soapy water) and a wide hand trowel. The jb are so sexed-up, they always fall before they fly when you bump them. Put the cup under the leaf, and cover/bump with trowel from abover. Virtually 100% go into cup. You just have to be careful not to shake plant so that others fly off before they can meet similar end. I hate using pesticides, though I'll spray single plant if bad enough. I also hate touching the vile little beasts, so the cup works best for me. I get fewer jb every year, partially I think because the neighbors aren't putting out pheremone bags that attract them to lay eggs (later grubs) in the area.


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brenda, that's almost exactly the method we use with 2 additions. 1- it works better if you do it when it's cooler, early or late in the day- they are much more apt to fly midday, even as they see you coming. and 2, i use a milk jug with the top cut off so i have a wide area for them to fall into. once one tumbles, they avalanche, and often they cover a good bit of area around 1 or 2 leaves. so i get more with each pass that way. if you cut the jug above the handle, but 1/2 way down on the other side, you have something to hold on to, but a good bit of surface area. you only need an 1/2 inch of soapy water so it doesn't get floppy or heavy. i would also advise anyone using this method to make sure you toss the beetles about 15 mins after you're done. leaving them sit, even for a few hours in the heat/sun makes one heck of a bad smell. this is one of the jobs i can get my kids to do without much coaxing- they like drowning the little buggers.


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This year they're working on my basjoo banana and black stem elephant ears. I don't think I've ever seen them attack these plants before!


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on the tour, dana mentioned they always attack her bananas & ee's- i was surprised- first i'd heard of that one. mine are all ok- but then i have a bunch of things they really like in the hib family, and rose/apple family. i did have them decimate my rhubarb the one year it came through the winter and still looked good at this time. since it's so daggone hard to grow here, i guess that isn't normally an issue.


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  • Posted by zigzag 7b - Triangle, NC (My Page) on
    Tue, Jul 3, 07 at 10:36

Using Tammy & Brenda's ideas, I went a beetle pickin' this morning and captured a goodly number! They're worst on the morning glory trellises (only the topmost leaves, of course - trick here is balancing on a stepstool to get up to them). The cut away milk jug is great and nitrile gloves eliminate the 'ick' factor (tried the trowel, too awkward). Thanks to you both.

Emptying the jug presented a bit of a problem since I have no woodsy or unused areas - so I poured the jug straight into the running garbage disposal ..... sometimes you gotta do what you gotta do!

The crepe myrtles are late so minimally infested so far this year - hope these rotten bugs run their course pretty soon!


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zigzag- i'd think you could pour them in the very corner or up on the retaining wall. they stink really bad when left in the water, but if you dump them before they get water logged, i haven't noticed the smell unless i was really close, like a foot away. but the garbage disposal works, too! i'd think a compost bin would be ok- but i wonder if the dead lady ones might have viable eggs? i've wondered that before, too. any thoughts?


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The JBs are coming back pretty quick and I have a couple of questions. First are there any new preventions since last soummer? Second, if I vacuum them off of my Cherry trees and take them back into the woods a 100 yards or so, to "dump" them, will they come back or stay in that area?

.


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  • Posted by zigzag 7b - Triangle, NC (My Page) on
    Thu, May 22, 08 at 23:51

Yipes! It's almost that time of year again - yuck!

Sokuzan, if you collect the beetles in a jug of water with a dash of soap, they'll be dead by the time you dump them. I'm not sure what you meant by 'vacuum' and they don't bother my cherry tree.


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zigzag,

My wife uses the soapy water technique which, as you said, kills them. I was interested in using a small "dustbuster" vacuum mentioned above I think, to capture them and then re-located them. I was trying to avoid killing them if I could.

Interesting that your Cherry trees were safe. I thought that they ate the leaves from all of our trees, Cherry, Apple, Plum and even the small Willows we planted a few years ago.

We also spent allot of time, money and energy with the Milky Spore approach two years ago over about an acre but it did not make a dent in the population that we could tell. We live in rural Michigan.

The only "good" they have done is to give me subject matter for some poetry and not very good poetry at that.

.


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If you release them, they'll just fly back. Why not kill them? They are an invasive nonnative pest species. They'll just breed where ever they fly to and end up being a problem for you next year unless you drive them miles away and make them someone else's problem. You could dump them in some soapy water if the vacuum thing works easier.

In my experience, they really like the prunus species, which includes cherries, plums, peaches, etc. Also, the malus group- apples, pears, quince and the like. They seems to gravitate towards all the hibiscus members as well, and grape vines and kiwi vines. Wouldn't surprise me if they liked willow- they sample & hone in on random stuff each year.


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tamelask,

Thanks for your informed response. I realize the need to deal with these pests and the fact that if we don't kill them they'll just come back and eat my Willows and Grape leaves or someone else's trees/plants. I just wanted to avoid killing in this case so I thought I'd ask about it. It seems that killing them is unavoidable.

.

.


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Sokuzan, if you used milky spore you were killing them, so soapy water is no different (just more tiresome and direct, I suppose). Please don't have any mercy for them...if you avoid anything, avoid NOT killing them!

Hey, maybe we can get to 150 on this thread!...I'm sure there are more JB stories to tell; or gripes to be typed?...


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  • Posted by zigzag 7b - Triangle, NC (My Page) on
    Fri, May 23, 08 at 13:23

Glad this thread has established that killing these bugs is okay and warranted.

They mostly hit my hibiscus, crape myrtles and are a bit of bother to my KO roses. Last year they feasted on morning glory/moonflower vines - I didn't plant them again this year. Hope the infernal JBs don't like clematis!

I live in a very tight neighborhood and have no grass on my lot, but everyone else around me does. Since JBs propagate in grassy areas, I can't really prevent them here - they're passing thru, munching all the way.

Not looking forward to, but will do the cut down milk jug of soapy water routine again and hoping all the while that the season will be short.


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mbuckmaster,
yes, I know I was killing them with Milky Spore. I was just trying to keep it to a minimum but, as I said and as everyone has said here, if we want our trees and other plants to survive it looks like somebody's gotta go..

.


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No offense intended, sokuzan. I too feel a little bad when I go out with the soapy water, but my guilt always lessens when I see the state of my apple trees. And death comes fairly quickly for them, I suppose...the soap seems to have a paralyzing effect on them, so I imagine it just knocks them out and they slip away.

Regardless, as tamelask said, they're an invasive pest species, so as conscientious gardeners we're almost obligated to take them out.


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Last year I was inundated by these buggers. It almost made me want to quit gardening, they were so destructive. This year, and I swear I don't want to be tempting Mother Nature, but I haven't seen them rear their ugly heads yet. Could the drought have had one redeeming factor??? Maybe the grubs were killed off by the drought and now they're not coming this year, or am I counting my chickens before they hatch?????


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  • Posted by zigzag 7b - Triangle, NC (My Page) on
    Thu, May 29, 08 at 15:43

Afraid it might be a tad too early to even hope for a JB drought kill-off .... early to mid June is when they usually hit me and I'm on the look-out now.

Only safe assessment is that every year is different.

Last year, due to the Easter freeze, my crape myrtles were way behind, so took less of a hit - but I did have morning glories who fed the JBeasties in their stead and the hibiscus - another tasty JB treat - was fair game too. No MG's this year (hope JBs don't like clematis!), but the hibiscus is way late in coming up so might be spared.

Have had a bit of JB destruction on KO roses in the past - am armed and ready w/my cut down milk jug of soapy water and fingers crossed. And, if it really is bad, I'll admit to calling in my garden elves who very selectively spray the worst areas with something that really works ..... while I look the other way. Sometimes ya just gotta do what ya gotta do ......


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RE: japanese beetles

I am trying Neem Oil mixed with bio-dish liquid and water. My son was working at a local plant store and they recommended it. Supposed to be safe. At any rate, my roses LOVED it as it is a foliar spray. It stinks though. Apply in late evening after sun is down. It's supposed to last 2-4 weeks. Can't spray the blooms, just the leaves.

I'll report back if it works. My KO roses and weeping cherry were devastated by the JBs last year.


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RE: japanese beetles

grubs are still here in my area - Everytime I dig some dirt to plant something, I find one. They are disgustingly big, besides. I am keeping soapy water dishes all throughout my garden this year - huge dishes by each hibiscus, agastache, malva - I am hoping they go for my four oclocks this year (they are supposed to be poison to them with one bite)... I am "armed" and ready to go!

Carrie


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RE: japanese beetles

  • Posted by catc 7b (My Page) on
    Thu, May 29, 08 at 21:35

I've been seeing the grubs too, and just the other day I saw one that looked like it was trying to mature into a beetle. Yuk. I just hope my poor roses get past their first flush of blooms before the miserable things get started. They ate the roses down to a bloody nub last year.


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RE: japanese beetles

If the grubs you are finding are as big around as your thumb, they're cicada grubs. They are easily twice the size of JB grubs. June bug (the smaller terracotta ones) grubs are nearly the same as JB's, so you may be finding those as well. My guess is the big iridescent green june bugs have similar grubs, too, but bigger. Our box turtles love to eat the grubs, but i haven't found too many this year. The populations fluctuate a good deal.


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They are ALL over my garden! The roses,hollyhocks,marigolds and almost everything else! Squish those suckers! They are even stripping my leaves off my apple trees. Isn't there a spray you can spray right on them that will kill them? Like soapy water in a spray bottle! I am so ticked off I am going out there now and taking back my garden! I WILL WIN! (wish me luck) tee hee


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by the way - the "four oclocks poisoning the beetles"...
never happened. I planted four oclocks all over my borders and not one Japanese Beetle was affected. Too bad - was really hoping that would help this year.

Carrie (found one in my hair when I came into from the garden - yuck!)


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I've been chicken-sitting for the neighbors and I'm glad to say that the chickens LOVE to eat JBs. I go around the garden a few times a day and pick off all I can find. The chickens quickly figured out what I'm up to in there and now they come running as soon as they see me step near the garden. I don't think the neighbors are too interested in getting their chickens back, which is fine with me since they're definitely earning their keep.

JBs are mostly hitting my knockouts (red ones especially) and Bloodgood Japanese maple. I find occasional JBs on the coneflower blooms and Shasta daisies. They've done a fair amount of damage to the maple, but I think it'll still be able to rebound once the little buggers are gone. (They do leave eventually, right?)


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  • Posted by zigzag 7b - Triangle, NC (My Page) on
    Sun, Jul 20, 08 at 11:57

I've been hesistant to say anything, lest I hex myself .... but the infestation has been very mild here, in comparison to years past. They did munch the Crape Myrtles, but I cut off all the decimated flower stems I could reach and the regrowth/rebloom is very gratifying.

For some reason, the JBs missed my hibiscus which is usually their favorite fodder and minimally lace-leafed parts of the KO roses. Not complaining, just commenting.

Every year in gardening is such an adventure!


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I'm with you, zigzag. I'm just south of Charlotte and have had hardly any JB's this year. They love to strip the huge whirling butterflies gaura I have, and I have seen maybe 10 there all season. They also munch this vegetation that is just off my property, but again, hardly any this year after 1000's last year. I did put down Milky Spore last fall, but it can't work that fast, can it?


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  • Posted by jrcan z8 Charlotte, NC (My Page) on
    Mon, Jul 21, 08 at 13:38

Your are correct, there are fewer beetles this year. We can thank the drought last year and last years watering ban for it. When the beetles lay eggs the eggs require water before hatching into grubs.

(During dry periods, adults may be more attracted to low lying and irrigated areas to lay eggs where soil moisture is higher. In extremely dry weather, many eggs and larvae perish. In warm, wet summers, eggs hatch in about 2 weeks. The newly emerged larvae feed until cold weather forces them into hibernation. One generation occurs each year.)

Full article here:

Here is a link that might be useful: NCSU turfiles


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They are not nearly as bad as last year but we certainly have them. My kids like to tie strings to them and fly them like kites.


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RE: japanese beetles

Are they gone, yet? It looks like my roses have come back after the JB damage. The Neem Oil helped, but I still had to cut off all of the blooms and buds to really get the JBs off the roses. Of course, the rain has really helped the roses recover. It was tough with the drought last year.

Next year, I'm going to get a little portable vacuum cleaner and have at them! Empty the canister into soapy water to finish them off...am I crazy or desperate? LOL

Cameron


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Had JBs last year and used grub control but they're numerous this year also. Neighbors aren't as serious gardeners as we, so the boogers are probably coming in from "grubby" areas nearby.

They're so enamored of the Boston Ivy along our fence that it's their primary target, so I collect them there twice daily while keeping an eye on my roses and weeping cherry. Don't like to hand pick but found they practically collect themselves if you hold a bowl of soapy water beneath and then disturb them. Virtually all instinctively drop. A few need encouragement. I've found a medium Tupperware bowl to be of ideal utility. Easy to grasp and the wide lip allows easy, sure placement (as compared to any cylindrical container), and the size makes for few "misses" as the JBs tumble.

So get rid of 'em.......then brace for the next unanticipated "plague" that will appear. That's gardenin'.


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Help! This is the first year I've had a Japanese Beetle problem. I was away on vacation for a week, and now have masses of them on my green bean plants and on my climbing roses. I would like to avoid using chemicals like Sevin, but will if I have to. It is extremely hot here right now, and I don't really have the time or energy to try to pick off a hundred or more beetles. I've heard Neem oil can be effective, but will it hurt the bean plants? Are there also some other organic oil sprays that might be effective?


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Carrie 18 --In zone 5 you should now be seeing a big decline in beetles, so Neem oil is of little use unless rampant defoliation continues for you.

However, if you had a problem this season you may have a bigger one next summer. Fertilized females lay many eggs in grassy areas. These turn into grubs which feed on the turf roots and emerge next summer.

Unfortunately there is no reliable eco-friendly treatment against these grubs. Milky spore disease and parasitic nematodes are used and available but results are slow and spotty. Scotts Grubex (or Bayer equivalent) is effective and reasonably benign, but the active ingredient, Imidacloprid, is quite toxic to some, esp bees and fish (but not earthworms).

Generally bees would not be affected by lawn treatment unless, say, you treat stands of clover, wildflowers, etc.

France banned Imidacloprid years ago, believing it caused bee colony collapse there. However, the problem seems to have been application to seeds, esp sunflower seeds, that lead to bee contact of the resulting (toxic) plant.

Recent studies of our bee colony collapse has been intense but has not lead to any connection with this insecticide, but not to a definitive cause either.

So if you see turf distress and find many grubs late this summer and fall you may need to act decisively, or battle them next summer.

Here is a link that might be useful: Beetle info


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I still have Japanese Beetles and it's been since beginning of June - need to put down that grub control in the spring - this is ridiculous.

Carrie


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I live in eastern Iowa and the beetles showed up about 2 weeks ago and most everyone panicked, and bought all of the Japanese beetle traps in the stores, I finally was able to buy 13 of them after most of my fruit trees and grapes are all ready devestated, but I sprayed them pretty good, and for the traps have been averaging 8 to 13 lbs of beetles everyday with 1 day yielding about 18 lbs. Right now so far I have caught 54 lbs. of beetles.


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I know I'm late to the discussion - JB just arrived here in Denver 2 years ago and hit my garden last summer - they devastated my Julia Childs. I understand they like pastel roses which is all that I have.
Japanese beetles flying range is about 1 mile, so unfortunately, even if you treat your yard, they may be hiding out in your neighbors. Interesting to note - they are not much a problem in Europe where there is very little lawn, unlike here in the US.
Also, don't squish them - it releases pheromes that will attrack additional beetles. Just knock them into a bucket of soapy water. Not to plug them or anything, but Gardens Alive has nematodes and milky spore - all organic methods that are non toxic to bees. Imidacloprid and Sevin are broad spectrum insecticides and highly toxic to bees. Traps will just attract MORE JB to your garden - probably not the best method - not even your neighbors as their fly range is so large.


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