Living Columns & Blogs

Tips for controlling Japanese beetles

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

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

▪  Use traps for Japanese beetles.

▪  Use an insecticide. Try one of the new environmentally-friendly insecticides.

Here’s more tips for your home and garden this week.

▪  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 azalea. Azaleas are a shade shrub, so those grown in sun will have more disease and insect problems.

▪  Encourage crape myrtles to bloom a second time by pruning faded blooms now.

▪  Grow moss on a cement statue or flower pot. Here’s how: 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.

▪  Fertilize container gardens with liquid fertilizer this week. 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 pen to write the plant variety on the stick.

Todd Goulding provides residential landscape design consultations. Contact him at or 478-345-0719.