Real sawflies - a family of seated hymenoptera insects from the sawfly group, which includes about 400 genera and more than 5000 species. Many types of sawflies are pests of forests and crops.
Representatives of the family are distributed all over the world, but there are more of them in countries with temperate and cold climates: for example, in Finland there are more than 700 species, and in Russia - more than 2000. And very few species live in Australia and South America.
The sawfly beetle, depending on the species, can be from 2 to 32 mm long. The head of the sawflies is not separated from the body, like that of a wasp or a bee, for which they are called sitting belly. The heads of the sawflies are large, mobile, equipped with well-developed jaws, two large eyes and three simple ones located in front. Sawflies' whiskers are bristle or filiform, they have two pairs of transparent, non-folding wings. In the abdomen of females, a sawtooth ovipositor is hidden, with which they damage plants. In males, the place in which females have a hole for the exit of the ovipositor is closed by a plate.
In early spring, the sawflies mate, after which the females lay eggs, making an incision in the tissue of one or another part of the plant for each, after which the female seals the pocket with the egg with secretions that protect both the egg and part of the plant from decay.
The sawfly larva, barely leaving the egg, starts eating, causing significant damage to plants. In the larval stage, sawfly insects are similar to butterfly caterpillars, however, caterpillars have no more than 5 pairs of legs and six eyes, and sawfly larvae have 6 or 8 pairs of legs and only 2 eyes, therefore beetle larvae are called false caterpillars. Having eaten enough, the sawfly caterpillars descend from the tree at the beginning of summer and build cocoons in the ground from their own excrement, dust and saliva for pupation. In the middle of summer, the second generation of pests appears from the cocoons, and in one season the sawfly can give up to 4 generations, which eat the foliage from spring to autumn.
All sawflies are herbivorous. Each species lives on a specific wild or cultivated plant, damaging it and feeding on its tissues.
In the fight against the sawfly, chemicals are used - insecticides. The best sawfly insecticides are:
In addition to these drugs, others are used to kill sawflies.
As a preventive measure against sawflies, it is necessary to dig up and loosen the soil in the near-trunk circles of trees and shrubs - this leads to the death of a significant part of the sawfly pupae and larvae. Do not leave sick and dry trees on the site, which pupated sawflies use for wintering. Ovaries damaged by the sawfly must be cut off and burned or buried to a depth of at least 50 cm. In early spring, trapping belts can be put on tree trunks. Pheromone traps are also effective against sawflies.
To treat plants against sawflies at an early stage of development, you can use an infusion of 1 kg of aconite herb, collected during the flowering period, in 10 liters of water, to which 30 ml of alkali is added and kept for two days. Before use as directed, add 40-50 g of liquid soap to the infusion.
Also, against the sawfly larvae, an infusion of 1 kg of finely chopped flowers and leaves of chamomile, collected during flowering, in 10 liters of water heated to a temperature of 60-70 ºC is used. The chamomile is insisted for 12 hours, after which the infusion is filtered, diluted with the same amount of water and 80 g of soap is added (40 g for every 10 l).
1200 g of wilted wormwood herb is insisted for three days in 10 liters of water, after which they filter and add 50-100 g of baking soda to the infusion.
2 kg of needles are poured with a bucket of water and, stirring daily, insist for a week in a dark place, and then filter. Before use, the resulting coniferous concentrate is diluted with water 1: 3 or even 1: 5.
70 g of soda ash and 20 g of liquid soap are dissolved in 10 l of water and the plants are treated with this solution.
3 kg of sifted ash is poured into 10 liters of hot water, insisted for two days, filtered through cheesecloth or a fine sieve and 40 g of liquid soap is added.
1 kg of fresh tansy is poured into 10 liters of water, boiled for 2 hours, allowed to cool, filtered and 40 g of soap is added.
However, it should be noted that it was possible to cope with the sawfly with folk remedies only in those cases when there were few of them. Basically, herbal decoctions and infusions are used as a prophylactic agent.
Since there are a lot of sawfly species that damage cultivated plants, we will only talk about those that are more common than others.
Roses are parasitized by several species, which can be divided into two groups:
If the number of sawflies is not very high, their larvae are collected by hand and destroyed. It is better to do this in the morning, when the larvae are clearly visible on the leaves. But if there are many openly living sawflies, you will have to resort to insecticides: Decis, Confidor, Aktara, Fastak or Karate. Digging the soil around the bushes will help reduce the number of sawfly cocoons. Measures to combat the rosacea sawfly living in secret are to use systemic insecticides: Mospilan, Aktara or Angio, and the bushes need to be treated at least 2 times with an interval of 20 days, and damaged shoots must be cut and burned.
The pine sawfly pest lives wherever conifers grow, because it feeds on needles. Russia, Caucasian and Asian countries, Japan suffer from this type of pest, and it has also been introduced to North America. It is not found only in the Arctic.
There are two species in the pine sawfly population: the common pine sawfly and the red pine sawfly, and the red sawfly is much less common than the common sawfly. In early spring, sawflies eat old needles, and then move on to young shoots and damage not only needles, but also branches. Scots pine and Banks pine most often suffer from sawflies. Pine sawflies are especially voracious in dry warm weather.
In addition to these pests, pine is also damaged by the pine star sawfly-weaver, which is common in Europe, Siberia and Kazakhstan. The sawfly is star-shaped from 10 to 16 mm long, it has a black head and chest, covered with yellow and white strokes, and transparent wings. The larva of this species, 18-26 mm long, is olive-green with four brown stripes and moves in three pairs of thoracic legs, but it has no abdominal legs. This sawfly is called a weaver due to the fact that its larvae form a cache in the form of a web tube. The star-shaped sawfly feeds on young needles, and when it is massively populated, the tops of the branches suffer, and sometimes whole trees die.
Pine sawflies are destroyed with glue belts and insecticides. If a large area of forest land is affected by a pest, then aviation services are used to process trees.
The spruce sawfly damages the needles of spruce by eating young needles of the current year. The peak of its destructive activity occurs at the end of May and the beginning of June, and outbreaks of its fertility occur after a warm winter: the pest produces a huge number of caterpillars for another 5-7 years. It is easy to detect the presence of a spruce sawfly: as soon as you notice a lot of eaten or damaged needles on the spruce, know that this is the work of the sawfly larvae.
They destroy the pest in different ways: they collect it by hand, attract birds, ants, and rodents to planting, install sticky plates on spruce trees, dig up the soil under trees to get rid of pupae, collect and burn fallen needles and treat trees when caterpillars appear with Kinmix or Karbofos.
Sawflies, parasitizing on plum trees, are also represented by two species, differing from each other mainly in color. The yellow plum sawfly, like the black sawfly, reaches a length of 5 mm, and their larvae are 8 mm. In the black sawfly, except for light wings with brown stigma, all parts of the body are black, and the yellow plum sawfly has a yellow-brown color.
Each of the sawfly larvae damages up to 6 fruits, and if there are a lot of pests on your plum, you can say goodbye to the harvest. The fight against the plum sawfly begins before the plum blossom: the tree is sprayed with Chlorophos, Rogor, Karbofos, Cyanox or Cydial. After flowering, the treatment of the tree with insecticides is repeated.
In early spring, to scare away sawflies, you can spray the plum before the beetles fly out of the cocoons with an infusion of wormwood or a diluted infusion of coniferous concentrate. Before flowering, choosing a cloudy day, adults are shaken off onto the litter, and then necessarily burned. The larvae hibernating in the soil are destroyed during the autumn digging of the soil in the tree trunk circle.
Cruciferous crops are damaged by the rape sawfly, which is widespread in areas with a temperate and cool climate. The greenish-gray larva of the rapeseed sawfly, covered with small warts and moving with the help of 11 pairs of cylindrical legs, grows to 20-25 mm, but during pupation its length decreases to 6-11 mm. The adult is only 6-8 mm in size with a black lacquered head and diamond-shaped spots on the back, colored yellow-orange.
Despite its small size, the rape sawfly has a high severity threshold: 2-3 larvae per 1 m² can cause serious damage. It is especially dangerous in the forest-steppe zones of Moldova, Ukraine and the European part of Russia. The rape sawfly feeds on shoots and leaves of cabbage, radish, turnip, rapeseed, mustard, swede, daikon, turnip or radish. The main diet of the pest is made up of buds, leafy pulp and young pods. As a result of damage caused by the sawfly, the plants do not form fruit, which can result in yield losses of crops such as turnip and rapeseed can be 80-95%.
To combat rape sawfly, when infected with 10 or more percent of the shoots, plants are treated with insecticides. As a preventive measure, deep loosening of the soil, removal of weeds, destruction of plant residues after harvesting, observance of crop rotation and the formation of bait crops with the subsequent destruction of pests on them are carried out.
Gooseberries, white and red currants are damaged by the yellow gooseberry sawfly. It is a reddish-yellow flying insect up to 1 cm long with a black head and yellow legs. Not adults are dangerous to plants, but sawfly larvae: bluish-green, with ten pairs of legs, covered with hairs and numerous black warts, eating away the buds and devouring leaves for 3-4 weeks. In one season, provided that the summer is long and warm, the gooseberry sawfly can give three generations. The greatest harm to plants is caused by the second generation, the harmful activity of which falls on the period of filling and ripening of fruits.
The pale-footed gooseberry sawfly also damages the leaves of gooseberries, white and red currants, the larvae of which devour the leaves of the bushes to the very veins. Voracious green caterpillars of this species with a brown head have 10 pairs of legs.
If sawflies are found, urgent action must be taken. What kind? If more than half of the leaves are left on the bush, you should not use insecticides. Collect the larvae by hand or shake them off on the litter, and then be sure to destroy. Treat the bushes with some bitter herbal composition: infusion of tobacco, garlic, tansy, wormwood or yarrow. Ash infusion is effective against pests. Plant tomatoes between the bushes, the phytoncides of which scare off adult insects. After harvesting, treat the gooseberry with biologics that increase immunity. Loosen the soil between the bushes, remove the weeds, and in the fall, dig the soil around the gooseberries.
If there are a lot of larvae on the bushes, and there are few intact leaves, you will have to resort to the help of insecticides.
On cherry trees, cherry slimy and cherry pale-legged sawflies parasitize. The slimy cherry sawfly damages not only cherries but also cherries, pears, apple trees, plums and roses. In length, the adult female reaches 5-6, and the male is 4-5 cm. The body and legs of the sawfly are black, the wings are transparent with black venation. Adults appear at the end of May or in the first half of June, and already on the second or third day, the female begins to lay eggs, the larvae of which emerge in a week or two. The larvae crawling out of their pockets are covered with black mucus and molt 5 times during their existence. The leaves damaged by the caterpillars look like burnt ones. Having got rid of the black mucus for the last time, the larvae turn yellow, descend to the ground and pupate. The second generation of adults begins in the second half of July.
The pale-footed sawfly damages not only cherries, but also pears, thorns, cherries, mountain ash and berry bushes. It has a black body 5 to 11 mm long and light yellow legs with black paws on the hind pair. The caterpillar of the pale-footed cherry sawfly is light green or whitish, with a light brown head and a dark speck on the crown.
With the mass occupation of a tree by the larvae of cherry sawflies, they resort to treating trees with insecticidal preparations, but if there are few pests, collect or shake them off the trees and burn them, loosen the soil in the near-trunk circle, and in the spring be sure to dig it up.
In addition to the sawflies described by us, such types of pests as the pear sawfly-weaver, pear cut sawfly, slimy sawfly, ash sawfly, apple fruit and leaf sawflies, bread sawfly and black bread sawfly, stone fruit yellow fruit sawfly and many others are widespread.
This pest often appears on the Crimean and mountain pine varieties. In its dangerous phase of development, it looks like a gray-red caterpillar (the color of pine bark), and the largest representatives can grow up to 9 cm.
One pest can destroy up to 700 needles per season, so it is better to deal with it immediately after it appears.
The development of the pine silkworm takes place in several stages:
Pine moth control measures include the use of insecticides based on chitin synthesis inhibitors (Decis, Aktara and others).
This group of pests includes several types of insects that feed on pine needles. Less dangerous are those that use last year's leaves. Other species harm the needles of the current year, significantly affect the vegetation processes and can lead to the death of the pine.
Sawflies also develop in several stages and differ visually:
When black caterpillars appear on the pine, it is worth immediately treating the trees with insecticides (Decis, Karate, Bliskovka and their analogues). Large individuals can be collected and destroyed by hand. On sale there are both specialized products from the pine sawfly, and complex preparations.
Most conifer pests are caterpillars. They appear in summer, after the butterfly period, and persist until pupation. If you do not get rid of them, then the life cycle of these insects is repeated, which significantly harms the trees.
The most common pine needles-eating pests include:
Control measures against pine moth, scoop, hawk moth and other pests do not differ. If the caterpillars appear on the needles, they can be collected by hand. However, the use of insecticides is more effective.
To date, many different types of spider mites are known. All of them infect some plants and crops. Here we will only mention the most common varieties of these pests.
So, among the most famous spider mites, today the following types can be easily distinguished:
There are a huge number of species of scale insects, there are over 2.4 thousand of them. As a result, these pests can infect the plants themselves, including garden and indoor plants. Among them, a number of species can be distinguished that cause significant harm to plants:
These scale insects can infect indoor plants as well as trees in the garden.
The comma-shaped scabbard has an area of distribution in the Non-Chernozem regions. In most cases, this pest attacks the following trees:
This scale insect can also move to other types of deciduous trees, especially hawthorn and mountain ash. In the event of an attack by these pests, their presence can be detected by the following signs: grayish or brown shields appear on the bark, which look like a comma about 3 mm long.
The larvae of this insect are highlighted in yellow and have red eyes. They are selected from the scutes immediately after the end of the flowering of apple trees and quickly spread through the trees. Literally in two weeks they completely scatter to all parts of the tree and stick to them. These can be fruits, shoots, leaves, as well as other parts and begin to suck the juices out of them, this is how they feed.
After passing through the molt, juveniles lose their mobility, after which they are covered with shields. The second molt leads to more serious metamorphoses: individuals turn into females, they lay eggs under the shields in the autumn, after which they die off.
The scabbards suck out the juices, which leads to their weakening. In case of mass distribution, they can cover branches and trunks of shrubs and trees. After a while, this leads to the death of the damaged bark, leaf fall and drying of thin branches. In addition, trees lose the required frost resistance, they are quickly affected by various diseases, bark beetles and other pests. Fruit trees as a result of the activity of scale insects can simply die within a couple of years. The comma-shaped shield is very harmful and tenacious, which requires urgent measures to eliminate it and carry out quarantine measures.
The mulberry scale insect is very common, because it is polyphagous. This pest prefers numerous ornamental and fruit shrubs and trees. In addition, such a scale insect also damages a number of vegetable crops. This primarily concerns carrots, fodder beets, pumpkins and eggplants.
The female's scutellum in most cases reaches about 2 mm, it has a rounded shape and white-gray color. The body is light orange or yellow in color. The male has an oblong white scutellum. The body of the male reaches about 1 mm and has a bright yellow color, there is a pair of wings, antennae and legs. Fertilized females overwinter at the scale insect. In the spring, when the temperature rises to 10 degrees, eggs are laid. Moving larvae hatch around May.
This type of insect is capable of infecting about 270 different plant species. This pest causes the greatest harm to fruit crops, especially peach, cherry plum, plum, pear and apple trees.
The scale insects of this species settle in large colonies on branches, leaves, and also fruits, which leads to the depletion of plants. Trees that have become a habitat and food for these pests lose the ability to bear fruit, because they spend all their strength on survival.
In botanical reference books, about 75 modifications of knifophya are described. The most famous are the following types:
Knifofia Tukka is the variety most adapted to the climatic conditions of central Russia
Hybrid knifofia can be of various shades.
The tallest variety of this decorative crop
Knifofia shaggy has a traditional yellow-red color
Knowing how to deal with the plum sawfly, you can minimize the risk of damage to fruit crops. A characteristic feature is considered to be the focal lesion of the pest, as well as a decrease in its number in places with dry soil litter. The sawfly is least present in artificially irrigated gardens with a natural arid climate.
The gardener must be attentive - it is important to notice the sawfly in a timely manner
A pine sawfly is able to appear at a summer cottage. In this case, it is worth taking the following measures:
If a small pine tree grows near the dacha, then it is worth collecting all the larvae yourself. It is recommended to wear glasses and gloves as pests can cause allergies. So, pine sawflies are dangerous pests. If they were found on needles, it is worth starting to destroy them. Otherwise, the trees may die.
Video about a dangerous pest:
Coniferous plants are susceptible to attacks by harmful insects no less than fruit and berry or ornamental crops. Some of them feed on needles, others sharpen wood, but they all bring undeniable harm to the plant. It is possible and necessary to fight them, but in order to win this battle, you need to know the enemy by sight. In most cases, the pest can be identified by the nature of the lesions on the plant.
Bark beetles are small inconspicuous bugs, no more than 12 mm in size. Pests grind holes under the bark, often reaching wood. Females lay eggs in the passages, and the hatched larvae continue their dirty work, creating real labyrinths of passages. At the end of each turn, they settle down and pupate. The beetles that emerged as a result of such a metamorphosis make holes in the bark and fly out. It is by these holes that the pest can be identified.
It is difficult to fight the bark beetle, but given that it usually settles on sick and weakened trees, efforts must be made to maintain the overall healthy state of the plants and increase their immunity.
Pheromone traps are used to fight. They are attached to the trunk, and beetles flock to them from a fairly large distance. Antiferomones are also used, but already to repel the pest. Also used insecticides in the form of spraying - "Clipper", "Bifenthrin", "Krona-Antip" and others. In the absence of a positive result, the tree has to say goodbye.
The bark beetle can be easily identified by the small holes in the bark of the tree. © Ranch & Home Tree Service
The spider mite is omnivorous and affects almost all cultivated plants. Small insects (they can not always be seen with the naked eye) suck sap from plant leaves, leaving small light dots on the surface. You can find a spider mite by a thin cobweb covering the needles.
A spider mite appears and actively reproduces in dry warm weather, therefore it is very important to maintain air humidity. For this, plants are often sprayed with plain water, in drought - every day.
To combat spider mites use acaricides - "Envidor", "Flumite", "Apollo" or insectoacaricides - "Aktelik", "Akarin", "Fitoverm". The preparations are diluted with water, according to the instructions, and the plants are sprayed in dry cloudy weather or in the evening. The frequency and frequency of repeated treatments can also be found in the instructions.
Spider mite on a pine tree. © Ostvig Tree Care
Fir-trees of all varieties are favorite conifers for sawflies, but some types of pines - mountain, common, cedar and Weymouth pine - can also suffer from this pest.
Sawfly larvae look like caterpillars and act in the same way - from May to June they devour young growths of conifers, after which the branches dry out and die.
Getting rid of the sawfly is not difficult, the main thing is to notice the enemy in time.For spraying plants, you can use any insecticide for a complex of pests.
Sometimes, small brown or yellowish plaque-like growths can be seen on the leaves of plants. If the outgrowth is flat, it is a scabbard, if it is convex, it is a false shield. The larvae of both those and others parasitize all year round, drawing sap from plants and thereby causing great harm. The plant affected by the scabbard grows worse, its needles turn yellow and crumble.
The needles affected by the false shield grow dull and often become covered with a sticky coating, which wasps love so much. It is the appearance of wasps that should alert in the first place if other signs have gone unnoticed.
To combat scabbards and false shields, 2-3 treatments are carried out with systemic insecticides - "Confidor", "Aktara", "Bankol" and acaricides "Aktellik" or "Fitoverm". These pests are well protected from external influences by shields, so the drugs should be contact-intestinal (systemic). When processing, it is desirable to alternate drugs from the first and second groups.
Pine and spruce are a favorite delicacy of the Hermes. There are several groups of these pests, which, replacing each other, parasitize from spring to autumn. All of them form galls on the shoots, which differ in appearance. So, at the beginning of summer, you can observe small oval galls on the needles of plants, in August - green, rather large, and from late August to September - large spherical galls. Hermes females extract sap from the plants, and the larvae damage the kidneys.
To combat Hermes, you can use the same means as against scale insects, since they also have protection from external influences, only these are not shields, but a dense downy cover. Therefore, systemic insecticides will be used.
Pine sawfly. © ogorodsadovod Thuja false shield. © vitusltd Spruce-fir hermes. © vitusltd
Conclusion. Conifers, like any other plants, are susceptible to various diseases and damage by pests. Many of them are difficult to treat, especially if it is an adult tree, and some of them are impossible at all. Therefore, preventive measures play a major role in maintaining plant health.
And there are no trifles - proper planting, care and regular inspection of plants will help, if not prevent, then detect the problem in time and start treatment. With this approach, the chances of saving the tree are significantly increased.