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Scale bugs suck, literally. They attach themselves to your plants, hang out and suck on the sap. If too many of them accrue, your plants and trees can really suffer. If you want to know how to get rid of scale insects in Columbus, Ohio, read on!

The two most destructive types of scale insects are armored and soft. The soft scale bugs excrete a sticky substance, referred to as honeydew, which can cause black fungus to grow on your plants. This black fungus is not only unsightly; it can damage or kill your plants.

Why are they called scale?

Scale bugs don’t look like the insects we are used to; most are flat and have a hard, shell-like outer covering. When many of them adhere to a plant or tree, they can resemble fish scales.

How do they multiply?

Adult females lay eggs, producing nymphs that will feed on your foliage and multiply your problems. Females do not need to mate in order to reproduce, so several generations can be born in a relatively short period of time.

Scale insects common to Ohio:

Oystershell is one of the common armored scale insects found in Ohio. These pests prefer to prey on shade trees and shrubs.

Lecanium is a common soft scale Ohio bug, which can produce excessive amounts of honeydew. The result: not only are your plants in danger, but the sticky substance can drip down from the tree and attract other unwanted pests like wasps and bees.

Professional gardener thinking to prune a tree

A organic farmer spraying a tree with a organic spray.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

What to look for:

  1. The leaves turn yellow or fall off, or your plant looks withered
  2. A sticky substance appears on your plants (or look for an excessive amount of ants, who are attracted to this substance)
  3. A black fungus appears on the leaves and stems

How to get rid of scale insects:

  1. If you only see a few insects, simply remove them from your plants by hand.
  2. If you have branches or leaves that are overly infested, cut them off entirely.
  3. Make a homemade solution of insecticidal soap, comprised of one cup vegetable oil, one tablespoon dishwashing liquid, and water. Apply this to your plants with a spray bottle. You can find the recipe here.
  4. Have a professional treat your plants. This way you know that the job is done right and your landscape is protected.

Contact Five Seasons Landscape Management for scale management in Columbus, Ohio. Our landscape team knows all about bugs and can treat your plants for scale insects the right way.