Nothing says summer best than your re-blooming brands of azaleas that can offer you joy throughout the hot season and during fall as well. Azaleas need well-drained soil, high in organic matter provided by compost, peat moss, or mulch, to thrive. For you to keep your azaleas happy you need a frequent watering plan. Otherwise, some would say that azaleas are quite resilient to our local weather and environmental factors. However, our pest control Sachse TX specialists warn you to keep an eye for the azalea lace bug, a nasty pest that can completely ruin your gorgeous azaleas beyond recognition.
What is the Azalea Lace Bug?
In their immature stages, azalea lace bugs are very small and have a dark, spiny appearance. In their adult stages, these insects have transparent wings and a very lacy, delicate look. Even adults are small and quite invisible, especially because they thrive under the azaleas’ leaves. The problem with these pests is that they can breed in 2 to 4 generations per year. This means that can thrive early in the spring in their egg-form under the leaves and cause damage all summer season long. The lace bugs’ numbers can build up rather quickly, this is why our pest control Sachse TX specialists recommend early detection and treatment.
How do you Know Your Azaleas are Infected by Lace Wings?
You won’t see the lace wings, but your will clearly see the signs of their damaging presence on your azaleas. They feed on the under sides of the leaves and have a preference for the green chlorophyll pigments contained by the leaves. This is why one of the first signs of azalea lace bugs’ attack is the white pots you can see on the leaves’ surface. Severe attacks translate into so many white spots on the leaves they will start to look gray or ashen. Another sign of a lace bug attack is represented by the black droppings the bugs leave behind on the underside of the leaves. One of the biggest problems with the bugs is that their damage remains even if you deter the pests. In other words, you won’t be able to restore your azaleas and let their leaves fall.
How Can You Control the Azalea Lace Bugs?
The pests are quite easy to kill if you manage to spray insecticidal soap and horticultural oils directly onto the underside of leaves. It is a rather complicated task and if you are not skilled you may waste the products. Ask your local pest control Sachse TX specialists to come down and perform a rigorous assessment of the situation. In small numbers, lace bugs can be knocked off with a powerful stream of water, but in large numbers they may need more direct control with sprays and substances.
However, even if you think the problem is over, you still need to pay attention to your azaleas. Monitor the newest growths, look for the tell-tale signs, and call your pest control Sachse TX experts again in fall to make sure lace bugs’ eggs don’t get to overwinter.