Aphids (Aphidoidea) feed on the sap tissue using a proboscis. They produce enormous amounts of honeydew as their waste. Honeydew produces a sticky film on and underneath infested trees. Due to their feeding on sap tissue, they are easily controlled by systemic insecticides. Aphids do not need to mate, and are essentially born pregnant. Because of this, they can build into huge populations over a relatively short period of time.
Aphids will suck out the sap from leafs, branches or any part of the tree where their mouth will be able to penetrate to the phloem (part of plant that moves nutrients). They will excrete ‘Honeydew’, which are clear viscous drops that will leave a medium for sooty mold to grow on and for other insects to eat. The leaves of some plants will be stunted, shriveled, or curled as a result of high populations. Many species are green, but may be white, yellow, brown, red, black, or mottled
There are wasps’ worms and lady bugs that are all predators of aphids and other harmful insects. The natural predators are successful in controlling and preventing outbreaks, but just like their prey they are susceptible to pesticides. In most cases it is better to allow for the natural pests to control the infestation.
If you’re unsure about what form of pest control to use contact Gruett.