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EDP Norfolk - - Garden Guide -

I have a sticky cot­ton wool-like growth on the branches of my ap­ple tree. What is caus­ing it and will it harm my tree? This is woolly aphid (erio­soma lanigerium) which can in­fect ap­ples, co­toneast­ers, sor­bus and sev­eral other trees and shrubs. The young overwinter in cracks or un­der loose bark. They emerge in spring and mul­ti­ply quickly around wounds or new shoots and can cause knob­bly galls on the trunk and make trees more sus­cep­ti­ble to dis­ease. They can be sprayed with an ap­proved in­sec­ti­cide or phys­i­cally re­moved with a brush and soapy wa­ter. Check reg­u­larly for re­in­fec­tion and treat im­me­di­ately. Hang­ing feed­ers in trees to en­cour­age in­sect eat­ing birds and un­der­plant­ing with flow­ers to at­tract ben­e­fi­cial in­sects will help pre­vent fu­ture in­fes­ta­tions of woolly aphid and many other pests.

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