Goulding: How to control Japanese beetles

June 26, 2014 

• Japanese beetles are attacking many of the roses and other plants in my garden this year. Here are options to control these pests.

1. Hand pick by pushing the beetles into a mayonnaise jar half full with a soap and water solution.

2. Use traps for Japanese beetles.

3. Use an insecticide. Try environmentally friendly insecticides.

• It’s time to check for lacebugs on azaleas. The top of the leaf will have speckling. The underside will appear to have brown dirt on it, which is actually the eggs. Spray with pesticide labeled for lace bug control on azaleas. Azaleas are a shade shrub; those grown in full sun will have more disease and insect problems.

• Encourage crape myrtle to bloom a second time by pruning faded blooms now.

• Grow moss on a cement statue or flower pot. Paint it with buttermilk or yogurt. Place the item in a shaded location, and mist with water every other day until moss forms.

• Now is the time to begin cutting herbs for drying. Cut herbs in the morning after the dew has dried. Rinse thoroughly. Never use pesticides or herbicides on or around your herbs. Use herbs in soup, sauces and teas.

• This week, fertilize container gardens with liquid fertilizer. Use half the recommended strength.

• Be sure to stake plants such as gladiolas, dahlias and lilies. Use some twine to secure these plants to twigs and branches collected from pruning around the garden.

• It’s hot outside. Enjoy a popsicle, and then use the sticks as plant markers. Use a permanent marker to write the plant variety on the popsicle stick.

Todd Goulding provides residential landscape design and consultations. Contact him online at www.fernvalley.com.

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