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Damaging Insects & Diseases

Japanese Beetle

Japanese Beetle

Japanese Beetles are small (1/2 inch) metallic green insects with bronze wing covers. The adults feed during the day on a wide variety of plants. They devour flowers, ripening fruit, and tender leaves with small veins, but only eat the tissue between the veins on tree leaves. The adults live for thirty to forty-five days and are most abundant in late July.
Lace Bug

Lace Bug

Lace Bugs are small (1/8 inch) insects. The adults have delicate, clear wings that they hold over their bodies. They commonly feed on azaleas, sucking the cell contents from the underside of the leaves, producing a mottling or speckling on the upper surface. There are many species of lace bugs. The most common is the (Stephanitis) on Azaleas and Rhododendrons.
Leaf Miner

Leaf Miner

A leaf miner is the larva of an insect that lives in and eats the leaf tissue of plants. They feed by creating shallow tunnels, or mines, in young leaves of citrus trees. The damage is unsightly, and if left untreated, can end up causing serious damage to a plant.
Leaf Spot

Leaf Spot

Leaf spot is a common descriptive term applied to a number of diseases affecting the foliage of ornamentals and shade trees. The majority of leaf spots are caused by fungi, but some are caused by bacteria. Leaf spot may result in some defoliation of a plant.
Mole

Mole

Moles are small grey to black mammals with fine velvety fur. They have hairless snouts and inconspicuous eyes and ears. Their eyesight is poor but they have superior senses of smell, touch and hearing. Their front feet are much larger than their hind feet and have long trowel-like claws used for tunneling in the ground. Moles live in burrows made up of many interconnecting runways that are usually about 6-8 inches underground.
Powdery Mildew

Powdery Mildew

Powdery mildew is probably the most familiar plant disease. Unlike most other fungus diseases of plants, it grows on the outside of leaves, forming a gray or white “powder”. Also, unlike other fungus diseases, which only infect wet leaves, powdery mildew invades dry leaves as well.
Pythium

Pythium

Symptoms of Pythium blight are evident during warm, humid weather when turfgrass leaves are wet for at least 12 hours. The disease is particularly severe when daytime temperature exceed 82 degrees F and night temperature fail to fall below 68 degrees F. Initial symptoms appear as dark green to purple water-soaked leaves that aggregate into circular or irregularly shaped patches in turfgrass. Patches of infected grass can enlarge causing severe damage to lawns.

Red Thread

Red Thread

Red thread disease is a fungal infection found on lawns. It is caused by the corticioid fungus and has two separate stages. The stage that gives the infection its name is characterized by very thin, red, needle-like strands extending from the grass blade. These are stromata, which can remain viable in soil for two years. After germinating, the stromata infect grass leaf blades through their stomata. The other stage is visible as small, pink, cotton wool-like mycelium, found where the blades meet. The first signs of infection are small irregular patches of brown/yellowing grass. As the infection spreads, the small patches will join to form large brown areas.
Rust Spot

Rust Spot

The rusts are amongst the most common fungal diseases of garden plants. Trees, shrubs, herbaceous and bedding plants, grasses, bulbs, fruit and vegetables can all be affected. Rust diseases are unsightly and often reduce plant vigor. In extreme cases, rust infection can even kill the plant.
Scale

Scale

There are many different varieties of scale. Scale resembles bumpy bark or fine ash on branches of trees and shrubs. Wherever they feed, they cause a reddening of tissue, usually several times the diameter of the scale. The removal of sap by thousands of scales is what causes the damage.
Shothole

Shothole

Shothole disease starts as brown spots on the leaves. As the leaves expand, the brown areas fall out leaving holes scattered over the leaf surface.
Slime Mold

Slime Mold

Slime mold is a broad term describing some organisms that use spores to reproduce. They feed on microorganisms that live in any type of dead plant material. They contribute to the decomposition of dead vegetation, and feed on bacteria, yeasts and fungi.
Snow Mold

Snow Mold

Snow mold is a type of fungus and a turf disease that damages or kills grass after snow melts, typically in late winter. Its damage is usually concentrated in circles three to twelve inches in diameter.
Sooty Mold

Sooty Mold

Sooty mold can be found on a variety of plants. It is caused by any of several fungi that are left on plants by aphids, scale, and other insects that suck sap from the plant. Sooty molds are unsightly, but fairly harmless because they do not attack the leaf directly.
Spider Mites

Spider Mites

Spider mites are among the most serious pests of ornamental plants. They feed on the underside of the leaves by sucking the juice out of the tissue. Because of the small size and the fact that the suck from the underside of the leaves, they are often overlooked until serious damage occurs.

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