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Viburnum beetle

Symptoms

Holes in the leaves of viburnums caused by the larvae and adults of viburnum beetle. Plants can be completely stripped of foliage and can emit a foul smell, which is thought to be caused by the excrement of the larvae.
Find it on: viburnums
Time to act: April-September

Overview

Viburnum beetle was named as the number one pest by the RHS in 2010, stealing the crown from slugs and snails. It's native to the UK, but is becoming more widespread. Most of the leaf damage is caused by the stripey, beige-coloured larvae, though later in the year adult beetles emerge, worsening the problem.
Solution
Holes in the leaves of viburnums caused by the larvae and adults of viburnum beetle. Plants can be completely stripped of foliage and can emit a foul smell, which is thought to be caused by the excrement of the larvae.
Organic
Watch closely for early signs of damage, which usually appear in April or May. Pick off the larvae by hand and destroy them.
Chemical
Spray the adults and larvae with an insecticide containing pyrethrum.



Discuss this problem

Talkback: Viburnum beetle
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Beverley Jones 23/05/2012 at 20:32

Could we have a photo of the adult viburnum beetle please. I have tiny holes in my V Plicatum Mary Milton but not seen the beetle itself or the larvae as yet.

Berghill 24/05/2012 at 10:11

Not found a picture of a Viburnum beetle, but can tell you that if your Viburnum has them then the leaves will smell absolutely disgusting (of dog muck0.

Please, though, where did you get V.p.Mary Milton from? I have tried everywhere to see if it is available(UK) without success

Emma Crawforth 24/05/2012 at 12:54

Hello Berghill,

Here is a list of suppliers of Viburnum plicatum. Many of them are supplying cultivars rather than the straight species, but cultivars often work better in gardens due to their breeding.

Beverley Jones,

There is a photo of the larvae in our feature on viburnum beetle in our problem pages. At this time of year it's the larvae that are causing the problem.

Emma

gardenersworld.com team

Berghill 24/05/2012 at 14:48

Thank-you, but not one of those places sells Mary Milton. We have many of the other V. plcatum forms already. but not that one.

michael neill 20/09/2012 at 11:20

Could you please tell me if the VIBURNUM BEETLE will eat the leaves on my HYDRANGERS ?

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