WOOLLY APHIDS

NZ Gardener - Garden Diary 2018 - - Growing Tips -

Woolly aphids are easy to spot. You’ll see fluffy, ‘woolly’ blobs on the stems of ap­ple and pear trees. If you pull those woolly threads apart, you will see aphids shel­ter­ing in­side. These sap-suck­ing pests gen­er­ally ap­pear on older trees or where there’s en­vi­ron­men­tal stress, such as ex­ces­sive shade or lack of wa­ter. In au­tumn, they tend to move down to the roots and in­flict even greater dam­age. You can re­move woolly aphids with your fin­gers (wear gloves; they pro­duce a sticky red mess when squashed), but they’re likely to reap­pear in a week or two. Keep squish­ing, or use a pyrethrum­based spray (these are con­tact sprays), or a sys­temic spray. Or paint with methy­lated spir­its, us­ing a small paint­brush. If us­ing con­tact sprays, make sure you get be­neath the woolly cov­er­ing.

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