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Box tree Moth Caterpillar

By Squirrel  
For those gardeners out there. This is one to watch out for especially in the UK.
It is a highly invasive species. Was first found in the London area in 2011 and since then has spread out to the home counties.
I have found 11 cases in the past 9 days in clients gardens. It is the first time I have found it in my area. These are the larvae of the Box tree moth. The Moth lays its 1 mm diameter eggs on the underside of the leaves of the Buxus. Within four weeks the caterpillar grow to about 35-40mm. They can de-foliate a plant in a matter of days. There is no natural predator in the UK so control is if you prefer non pesticide -' pick and squish' ( but if it is a large hedge or topiary specimen - frankly you will be there forever ) or by using a pheromone trap or a biological control. If the chemical method is decided upon there are two choices a contact one or systemic one.
Your local garden centre should be able to advise you.The period of activity of the adult moth is from late march until october so you will have to do it more than once.

If you find the caterpillar the Royal horticultural Society have a box tree moth report form-they need all the data they can get to see how far it has spread.

Tags: Caterpillar Flowers and plants Box tree moth Box tree moth caterpillar Invasive species

Voters: ladynewbury, babajoshua, newbe2 and 5 more


Comments


31 May 2019 11:49PM
interesting!!

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31 May 2019 11:51PM
Horrible creature, I shall keep a look out, thank you Jacqueline. It's a shame as they are attractive caterpillars. Pam

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