Thursday, July 3, 2008

The Beetles Reunite for 2008 Performance

Back by unpopular demand for the 92nd year... The Beetles (Japanese Beetles)! Performances began the last week in June and are scheduled throughout the region for the next 30-45 days. Their tune has not changed much. Expect them to be playing Skeletonizing Zinnia, Happiness is a Warm Raspberry, Lovely Rosebush, Grape Leaf Surprise and others among their repertoire of 300 favorites.

By early August, the aging group's offspring, calling themselves The Grubs, are expected to go underground. The new generation will perform, as usual, on (actually under) lawns. They prefer well irrigated turf and usually are a bust if dry weather prevails during late summer. So, if this group's act is not for you, allowing lawns to remain dry is a good way to reduce their presence.

Certain homeowners have taken preventative measures against both the adult and expected juvenile stages of The Beetles by calling The Police who applied very effective chemical controls in the form of imidacloprid to trees, shrubs and lawns. It's too late for this treatment on woody plants but lawns can be treated through the month of July if many Beetle performances occur in your area. Be sure the treatment is watered-in after application.

On thing I've noticed is that once performances begin, they tend to keep playing in the same site for a long time. So eradicating Beetle infestations early is important. Trapping beetles is easy but ineffective. They can fly. A popular control measure used on the The Grubs, called Milky Spore Disease has not proven effective in research studies, according to many Beetle experts. Old timers are known to apply The Hand Jive to control beetles. Catch them napping early in the morning and knock them into a can of soapy or oily water.

Successful tours the past two years may be catching up on the Beetles. Rival groups, including The Wasps, The Flies and even the Birds and The Toads are taking their toll on The Beetle's success.

No comments: