Crapemyrtle – Protecting From Beetles

Q: My three-year old crapemyrtle was killed by Asian ambrosia beetles. Fortunately it has re-sprouted from the bottom. My question is, what can be used to combat these pests before they dig in?

A: Asian ambrosia beetle damage has become much more common in the past decade. It was first seen on peach trees in Charleston SC in 1974. The tiny beetles bore into small trees like crapemyrtle, flowering cherry and Japanese maple and deposit a fungus to feed their young. The fungus grows and kills the host tree. The female beetles emerge in March each year. Spray the bark of your susceptible trees with an insecticide labeled for wood boring insects early in March and again in April.

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