Q: My property has many hardwood trees. I continually have to pick up short limbs with healthy green leaves. What is causing them to fall?
A: If the trees are oak, pecan or hickory, the culprit is likely the twig girdler beetle. Female beetles emerge in August and fly to branch tips. There she chews a V-shaped groove around a twig and deposits an egg in the bark beyond her gnawing damage. Wind causes the twig to fall to the ground. Larvae overwinter in the twig and come out next autumn. Obviously the best way to control twig girdlers is to gather fallen branches and destroy them. You’ll see lots of the twigs now. More will drop occasionally during winter.