Gypsy Moth – How to Control

World Class Giant Pumpkins - George Brooks

Gypsy Moth

Description: Larvae are gray caterpillars 2″ long, with

long brown hair. They eat tree foliage of all kinds.

Eggs hatch in late April or early May and larvae search

for food immediately. At early stages, the damage to

leaves is slight and is often overlooked, but the early

stages are when these pests are most vulnerable to control

by Bt. In their last stage before becoming moths, the

larvae feed in mass, causing overnight defoliation.

In late June or early July the caterpillars stop feeding

and begin their transformation into adult moths.

Solution: The crucial

control period is late April to June 15th. By mid-June

the caterpillars have grown to 3/4″ long and begun to

defoliate leaves. By applying Bt ssp. kurstaki at 10-14 day intervals

in April through June (3 or 4 applications), damage

to leaves can be almost totally eliminated. Just 2 applications

are enough to prevent noticeable defoliation. Spraying

with Neem-AwayTM Insect

Spray or PyolaTM Insecticidal

Spray also controls larvae. Use Slick n’ Stick Tape and Bug Gum to

form a virtually impregnable barrier around the tree.

Caterpillars feed only at night. During the day they

crawl down to hide in debris on the ground. Caterpillars

cannot cross the Bug Gum.


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