Just when you are enjoying your garden, you discovered that some of your flowers have been defoliated. Roses in particular and other favored plants are in danger when the Japanese beetles arrive. Japanese beetles love to eat rosebuds and they are not shy to show their presence. They come in great numbers and will shock you with their offensive behavior at the expense of your garden.
These bugs first came to America in 1916, where they were first spotted in the East Coast. Now, these bugs are common in Maine, Alabama, and west to the Mississippi. It is also making a slow motion invasion of the West Coast at the rate of five to ten miles per year.
These Japanese beetles will come to search for a mate in early July while searching for their favorite food. Controlling these pests may become difficult since they send out a congregation pheromone to call a few hundred of their friends to dine in and do sexual orgies.
Since most homeowners want to get rid of these beetles right away, manufacturers of baits have created their own well-known scent lures with the idea that these beetles will take the scent and kill them. However, the opposite has just occured. These pheromone-baited traps are just attracting more beetles into the garden, and they are not dying. In fact, these beetles will feed on your flowers and plants, and will mate continually until they produce their eggs.
They will descend to the soil every day or every other day to lay their eggs. By mid-August, each of them would have created up to 6o eggs. Once they reach maturity, these beetles can live up to 30 to 45 days. During those days, they can travel 2 miles to locate their food. These pests can damage lawns with an average of $230 per lawn. These shiny white grubs will feast on your garden and will damage your lawn.
Control Measures for the Japanese Beetles
The best time to control these insects, is during August and September. During these months, these beetles are active and in great numbers. They will be commonly seen feeding near the surface of plants. To control these beetles, use milky spores and parasitic nematodes.
Milky spores are commonly used for new lawns that have been established for less than eight years while parasitic nematodes, which are tiny worms can be used to effectively target only these beetles. If you are going to use chemical grub poisons, you need to be careful on how you will use this since this poison can possibly affect the environment, your household, and beneficial insects.
If you do have some time, you can pick these tiny beetles, one at a time and drop them in a bucket of soapy water to die. You can also use sprays, but again, you will need to be careful with how you are going to use insecticides since there are other pollinators out there that you need to take care of.
If you really want these creatures out of your lawn, you can avoid growing the flowers that these Japanese beetles love. Stop growing roses, grapes, fruit trees, and hollyhocks. However, most gardeners will never succumb to the threat of any insects. There is no complete way to stop them from eating the flowers that you are growing. The only simple solution is to just cut the affected rose blossoms, wait for the next season when these pests have already died, and just continually grow plants.