[NAFEX] Wrapping trees for protection - Japanese Beetles

BRosholdt rosholdt at erols.com
Wed Feb 14 09:54:58 EST 2007

> Subject:
> Re: [NAFEX] Wrapping trees for protection
> From:
> list at ginda.us
> Date:
> Tue, 13 Feb 2007 23:32:49 -0500
> To:
> North American Fruit Explorers <nafex at lists.ibiblio.org>
> On Feb 13, 2007, at 8:32 PM, BRosholdt wrote:
>> Barb here in Zone 7a(?), central Virginia  (couldn't prove global  
>> warming at my orchard - we just had two weeks with temperatures  
>> dipping to the single digits more than twice, and maybe more to  come 
>> - all with no snow cover whatsoever!)
>> The real nuisance in my orchard is the Japanese Beetle. . . .
> Have you tried milky spore?  Or hormone traps?
> I put down milky spore when I moved in.  Most of my neighbors treat  
> their lawns for "grubs" with one poison or another.  The result is a  
> very manageable number of japanese beetles that don't do much damage.
> Years ago my father tried a trap.  The downside is that you attract  
> beetles from all around (you really want to talk your neighbor into  
> doing this) but he bagged pounds and pounds of beetles with little  
> effort.
> Ginda
> ------------------------

I am sorry I wasn't more forthcoming about my Jap Beetle history.  I 
have put down Milky Spore several years ago, and have not seen much 
benefit, but we have heavy clay, are surrounded by woods and they seems 
to come out of the woods, too.  Last year I spread beneficial HB 
nematodes all over everywhere under almost perfect conditions.  We have 
clay soil, with compost on top (slight incorporation) following 
fertilizer apps.  Perhaps the Milky Spore was old/not well placed.  I 
could believe I need to redo that.  I am currently working on planting 
Forsythia to lure more Spring Tiphia wasps (Jap Beetle parasitizer) down 
from the Tulip Poplars, feed 'em and get 'em working harder!  In spite 
of all of this, I am losing all peaches and plums, some raspberries, and 
the beetles totally defoliate the apple orchard by August.  Not good. 

Traps don't bring more or cause less damage, but since I am only there 
on weekends, they are less effective.  I have several ideas.  Surround 
has been a temporary help, but at some point you have to not spray on 
the fuzzy fruit so the white stuff wears off sort of, before harvest.  
Bagging fruit doesn't seem to prevent the JBs eating foliage.  Extension 
says the beetles are out of balance and I am going to need to spray 
something like Imidan (?) but I am concerned about the effect of a 
general insecticide spray on my HB nematodes.  They were a little 
expensive to just kill off, even in patches, and I can't really spray 
the everbearing raspberries.

Has anyone ever tried any of these:

1.  Japanese Beetles (JB) blended with water in a blender, let sit for a 
few hours, strained and sprayed the result (an old Organic Gardening 
remedy) on the plants.
2.  Completely wrapping the trees in something.  Especially the very 
young trees that have a very negative response to defoliation (limb 
extension, disease, and/or death).

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