|Cinara aphids are some of the largest aphids in the world.|
I talked with only one grower so far that has seen Cinaras in his trees this fall. Mostly they aren't seen until they show up in someone's home. Many people now treat preventatively for the pests, using Talstar or Wisdom which are both bifenthrin products in late September or October. But now is still a good time to treat for elongate hemlock scales with Asana and Dimethoate. And if you know Cinaras are in your trees now, should you wait until October or go ahead and spray?
The question that we don't have an answer to is how quickly do these aphids move into new areas. Some individual aphids have wings, allowing them to fly into trees. However, they aren't very good fliers. Basically all they can do is get up in the air and allow the wind to carry them places. They don't direct their flight like a fly or a bee.
|A winged individual.|
One reason to go ahead and treat now is that most of the aphids are still higher up in the tree where they are more easily controlled. As it gets colder, it seems that the aphids move to the lower branches, making it harder to get a chemical to them, and certainly with a mistblower.
|When Cinara aphids are on the trunk of the tree, it is harder for a mistblower to reach them.|
And what about the Cinara eggs? I've only seen them once in all my nearly 23 years working in the industry!
|Cinara aphid eggs found in Ashe County about 10 years ago.|
Whenever you are in your trees this fall, be sure to look closer if wasps or yellow jackets are interested in your trees. It could well be Cinara aphids. This typically happens during warm, dry days in the fall when the wasps are especially active. Beat the foliage of a few of these trees to see if aphids fall out.
|Wasps are attracted to the sweet honey dew that aphids secrete.|
|You sometimes find Cinaras when you are beating the foliage to find other pests.|
If you do end up with problems with Cinara aphids on harvested trees, remember these links for information. If you have a retail-lot, you might want to make a few printed copies of the last link in case of problems.
- Christmas tree note: Cinara aphid on Christmas trees in North Carolina
- Post-harvest pests on Christmas trees: Control at the retail lot
- Post-harvest pests on Christmas trees
- Rogues' gallery of post-harvest pests
- One-page printer friendly version of consumer information on Cinaras
I am always happy to speak with your customers about this pest problem should the need arise.