Japanese beetles are the bane to all gardeners’ existence! While they may be pretty beetles with their iridescent bodies, they can wreak havoc on your yard, garden, and flowers. Continue reading to learn how to get rid of Japanese beetles.
Where do Japanese beetles come from?
Japanese beetles originate from Japan, hence the name! During ancient Japanese times, this insect was known as a jewel due to its iridescent body and striking color. Since this insect is not from the United States, it does not have any natural predators like other pests may have. This is why Japanese beetles can be so difficult to control!
Why are Japanese Beetles So Bad?
How can an insect be so bad for your plants? Easy. This insect has an insatiable appetite and eats, eats, and eats. If enough attack your plant, they can cause extensive damage in as little as 24 hours. Japanese beetles do, however, have a relatively short feeding season. They typically come out in June and feed from the end of July to the beginning of August.
How to Control the Japanse Beetle
There are many methods for controlling and getting rid of Japanese beetles. But it will be an ongoing job until their season is over. The first method is the most organic and chemical-free way. However, it will have to be done every day until their season ends. Fill a bucket with soapy water and hand-pick the beetles off the plant. Throw them in the bucket, making sure they are trapped. They will eventually drown. When using this method, be sure to move quickly, as these insects can fly!
The next method is to use an insecticidal spray, such as Sevin. Check the back of the bottle to ensure the insecticidal spray works on this particular insect. When using a spray, work quickly. Once the beetles feel movement on the plant, they will fly away.
The third method is the use of a systemic. Systemics work by absorption of the chemical or poison through the plant. When the insect eats the plant, it will ingest the chemical and die. A benefit to systemic insect control is that they continue to work. A con to systemic insect control is that it kills all insects that eat the plant, including our beloved pollinators.
The fourth method is to use a Japanese beetle trap! A plastic bag lures the beetles into the trap with a pheromone. While this is a more organic approach, you may end up with more beetles than when you started because the pheromone attracts these insects from your neighbor’s yard!