Pest Management

How to: Manage Fruit Worms in Your Garden

Fruit Worms blog post
Fruit worms can be extremely aggravating to deal with. Prevention is key with these pesky critters! It is important to work to try and prevent these from ruining your fruit.
 
Treatment Options:
  • Removing all the surrounding debris and weeds from around your trees or bushes can help to prevent egg laying by the moths.
  • Hand picking infected fruits and disposing of them can help prevent spread of the worms.
  • Use the organic pesticide, BTK (bacillus thuringiensis Kurstaki). BTK is a naturally occurring microorganism that sickens and kills caterpillars without harming butterflies, bees, and other beneficial insects. There are varied opinions regarding the safety of BTK, but it’s classified as an organic treatment and is certainly safer than using a more toxic pesticide.
  • Beneficial insects can be very helpful with this pest as well! Lacewings and ladybugs attack the eggs and the smaller larvae. Parasitic wasps can attack the worm itself (if it can get to it). Praying mantises can kill the adult moths before they lay their eggs.
  • The fruit worm comes from a moth that lays its eggs into fruit. Catching the moths that lay these eggs can help to prevent a worm problem in the future.
     

Plants to Watch:

  • Any type of fruit plants or trees except citrus

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