Crape myrtle aphids are tiny, only about a 16th of an inch long. If that sooty mold is accompanied with white specks on the trunks or branches, that is the crape myrtle bark scale, and is cause for action. My "Tonto" crape myrtles stay covered with aphids and black mildew. Plants or objects beneath the tree may also be coated with honeydew. The aphid is unable to digest fully all the sugar in the plant sap and excretes the excess in a fluid called honeydew. Crepe Myrtle Bark Diseases from Scale. Tree cattle perform a valuable function in consuming excess accumulations of … This article covers the topic of controlling Crepe Myrtle (also spelled Crepemyrtle, Crapemyrtle or Crape Myrtle) bark scale. So this is not the first time this week I have seen these groups of black bugs traveling up the branch of my crepe myrtle. Watch Queue Queue So if your Crepe is sad, let’s talk about how we can get it in good shape for the summer and see how we can rid you of your sticky shoe soles and “dewy” showers. Tommy cowett shows you the treatment. Crepe myrtle aphids reproduce rapidly. There is a new, serious threat to one of our favorite trees. Recently, ladybugs were reported to be a potential biocontrol agent of the crape myrtle bark scale (CMBS), an invasive scale insect from southeast Asia. This makes it easy for them to quickly grow into a large population that will damage your tree. In the second picture you can see the one group and then another group coming up at the base of the trunk. Aphids and azalea bark scale feed on the sugars produced by Crepe Myrtles. Japanese beetles are another of the crepe myrtle pests that should be mentioned. In its na-tive range, this scale, tentatively identified as crape myrtle bark scale (CMBS, Eriococ- The tree sits at the end of my 20 foot long flower bed. Wherever this honeydew lands, the stems, leaves and trunk get very sticky and then a black sooty mold will form. They do not appear to fly. Answered. The other crepe myrtle, on the southern side, and the two nuttal oaks, in the front yard, do not seem to have these bugs (at least not that we’ve found). Spider Mites on Crape Myrtles. Damage occurs when the aphid sucks the juices from the crape myrtle leaves. Crape myrtle bark scale is relatively easy to identify. It seems everywhere in the South a crepe myrtle could be planted it has been. The ancestral Dutchman collared me the other day, and with the squint of an ancient mariner, proceeded to reveal to me the wondrous phenomenon overtaking his crepe myrtle. Dormant oil spray from Growingreen. You are correct in seeing a similarity between the bugs on the piñons and the crepe myrtles. Answer + 11. Doc explains how to cure this and what this is. Ants on Crape Myrtle. The best way to remove sooty mold is with a soft brush and some dish detergent, just scrub it off. You walk out to your crepe myrtles and you see that the leaves look black. I've got them all over and they are chowing on the leaves...esp the new growth leaves. This scale lives and thrives on crape myrtle, suggesting a different identity for it. This often leads to a black fungus, called sooty mold, forming on leaves and branches in mid- to late summer. Tips tricks and a beautiful place! Local garden center recommended "Natural Guard Neem Oil by ferti-lome". Killing aphids and black sooty mold on bushes, trees, and crepe myrtles is not as easy as it sounds. You bug people...can y'all tell me what the heck is eating my Crepe Myrtle leaves? Published January 28, 2010 By CHRIS BREWER. The insects’ digestive systems do not process all of the mat­er­ial they eat. You can kill the aphids with Malathion or Neem Oil. 6741 Views Save Print Email. As summer approaches, it is not unusual for crape myrtles' lush green growth to turn black as they are covered in sooty mold. crape myrtle has never before been report-ed as a host plant for azalea bark scale. They cluster. Masses of colorful summer blooms make crape myrtle (Lagerstroemia spp.) Turn the leaves over and you see little white dots / bugs. There's no denying the crepe myrtle' supremacy as the number one ornamental tree in our region. Killing aphids on plants is not as easy as many lead you to think. First brought to the United States in 1916 in a shipment of iris bulbs, these invasive tree bugs can defoliate an entire tree in a matter of days. It is one of the only scales known to infest crape myrtles. I see the vermin but they move too fast for me to get a good picture. True bugs (order Hemiptera) have sucking mouthparts, where beetles have chewing mouthparts. Flowering crape myrtle (Lagerstroemia indica) is an easy-care ornamental. I have noticed black sooty mold on my crape myrtles along with white spots on branches (photos are attached). That was last weekend. If your crepe myrtle is affected by white scale, it may develop black sooty mold (In fact, the sooty, black substance may be the first sign of white scale on crepe … Found throughout May through September, these tiny insects do damage by feeding on the soft tissues and plant sap of Crepe Myrtle leaves. This is a shot of Aphids being munched on by Lady Bug Larvae ( thanks to David Cullen) This is why it is soooo important to avoid chemicals and know who your allies are! Although, they are usually referred to as bugs, ladybugs are actually beetles. Targets: Linden, crape myrtle, flowering crabapple, Norway maple, Japanese maple, flowering cherry, elm, sycamore, black … This makes it easy for them to rapidly grow into a large population that will damage your crepe myrtle. Adults have shiny black wings that are held tent-like over their abdomens. This residue will turn black from dust and pollution collecting on it. The black mold on a crepe myrtle is attributed to aphids. This video is unavailable. Crepe myrtles, more commonly known as crape myrtle or crapemyrtle (Lagerstroemia spp. When crushed, these scales exude pink “blood”-like liquid. A black sooty mold fungus may develop on this sticky substance. Crepe myrtles are medium-sized trees that produce large clusters of pink flowers and dark green oval leaves. Crepe myrtle bark scale insects make their home on the plant's exfoliating white bark, where they conceal themselves beneath protective wax. Black sooty mold literally looks like black dust on your leaves and bark. Such popularity comes at a price, however, as it makes it easy for a pest to hop from one tree to another. Benimoto/Flickr.com Q. These bugs will eat the tree. I was just about to remodel my front flower bed when I discovered the white bark disease bugs on my crepe myrtle tree. They are in large colonies and there are larger all black bugs that appear to corral and guide the colony around. The scales also reproduce on the shrubs, with each female laying dozens of pink eggs. Worse from the standpoint of looks, the sticky waste given off by the aphids, called honeydew, spawns unsightly black mold. Crape myrtles are commonly attacked by crape myrtle aphids. Another of the crepe myrtle pests is sooty mold.Sooty mold doesn’t harm the plant and will go away by itself so long as you control the aphids. Bark eating bugs on my crepe myrtle. I have at least 6 different swarms of these on one tree. ), are large shrubs or small multiple-trunk trees with flower clusters in whites, pinks, reds and purples. This is a very large mature tree, beautiful last year. I don't want to lose it! It’s even more serious than the unsightly and oft mentioned crape murder. Most crape myrtle varieties thrive in U.S. Department of Agriculture plant hardiness zones 7 … an excellent choice for flower lovers. I have these striped bugs on my crepe myrtle and another "barkless" tree. There are tons of them on there. Adult females are felt-like white or gray encrustations that stick to crape myrtle parts ranging from small twigs to large trunks. They are in clusters and from a distance look like black patches on the bark. Crape myrtle trees are very popular in landscapes. They fill the bill of being a small, summer-flowering, deciduous tree. Any clues to what they are?? I’m betting the black bugs are, in fact, aphids, just an aphid of a different color. Aphids feeding on a plant. Crape Myrtle. I mixed it 3 oz to 1 gallon and sprayed it on the tree and underside of the leaves. 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