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How to Protect Your Trees and Shrubs from Insects: 5 Tips to Remember

It’s easy to go full Mama Bear when it comes to tree-eating bugs. 

Your trees and shrubs are precious members of your landscape family. The fluffy hydrangea! Swedish aspen! Red twig dogwood! Gold mound spirea!

When aphids, spider mites, borers and scale start viciously attacking your tree and plant babies, it’s WAR! (To be fair, they don’t see it as viciously attacking. They’re just hungry. But you’d rather they dine elsewhere, right?) 

How to protect trees and shrubs from insects? Check out these tips:

1. First Up, Attack Aphids

These tiny hungry pests are the most common insects found on trees, shrubs, and garden plants here in Idaho. 

Tree and shrub care in Idaho means battling aphids

They’re super tiny, but when a whole bunch of them gather to feast, their big appetites can damage your trees and shrubs.

aphids on leaf

And it doesn’t take long for a whole bunch to appear. Aphids multiply quickly. Get those little beasts under control before reproduction starts. 

What kind of control? Spray treatments three times a year to zap any aphids crawling on your trees and shrubs and stop bugs from eating your plants. 

It’s a lot easier to prevent aphids than to treat them after they show up.

2. Meet Miticide

Miticide is a weird word, right? But it’s your mighty solution to that tiny but big pain called spider mites.

These hungry pests are so tiny you can barely see them. But don’t be fooled. They gather in big colonies, mostly on the underside of leaves.

These tiny tree-eating bugs pierce the leaves of your trees and shrubs and suck up the plant fluids. Pretty bold, right? 

CC- Spider Mites on Leaf

How can you tell you have them, if you can’t even see them? 

First you’ll notice tiny spots on leaves. Then leaves may turn yellow, curl and dry up, and fall off.

Here’s where miticide comes in: spider mites seem seem like insects, but they’re actually a type of arachnid, relatives of spiders, ticks, and scorpions.

So you need a miticide specifically designed to kill mites. Or at least a pesticide that says it also kills mites.

3. Stop Bugs from Eating Plants with Horticultural Oil

Here’s a cool idea: wipe out tree-eating bugs BEFORE THEY EVEN HATCH. 

It’s also called dormant oil, and this handy stuff kills damaging insects that love to lay eggs in your trees and shrubs.

Horticultural oil spray is a highly refined petroleum product used as an insecticide to suffocate insects and insect eggs that have overwintered on trees and shrubs.

plant health care expert sprays shrub with dormant oil

Instead of poisoning the bugs, you’re basically smothering them with the oil. Yes, it sounds pretty mean, but try to focus on your precious trees and plants. The oil kills any lingering insects as well as their eggs, so they won’t hatch in the spring.

Lawn Buddies technicians apply the oil spray in early spring while your trees and shrubs are still dormant. 

Then, bye bugs. It hasn’t been nice knowing you.

4. How to Protect Trees and Shrubs from Insects? Try Tree Injections

Tree injections are a powerful, sort of sneaky way to stop bugs from eating your plants. 

Tree injections are like shots for your trees. They deliver “medicine” to treat diseases and insects directly into your stressed tree. 

It’s injected right into the tree trunk, then quickly taken up by the vascular system and distributed throughout the tree.

Tree injection

This professional tree care treatment works faster and is more effective than spray treatments, which can take weeks to work. 

These injections can treat infestations of borers, aphids, spider mites, and scale — fast. 

More good news: tree injections just require one treatment and lasts for a whole year. It’s a great reason to sign up for tree and shrub care in Idaho Falls and Boise, ID.

5. Stop Bugs from Eating Plants with Lawn Buddies in Idaho Falls and Boise

It’s hard work going full Mama Bear on tree-eating bugs. 

Plus, you have other stuff to do, like making porridge and watching for golden-haired intruders.
Maybe it’s time to hire plant health care services in Idaho Falls and Boise, ID.

Tree and shrub care services are available for our Idaho Falls and Boise customers who use our full-service lawn care program.

The first step is to sign up for our 6-step complete lawn care program.

You’ll be glad you did. 

Choose an Idaho Falls or Boise professional lawn care service that makes it easy, bundling your yard’s most-needed treatments into one convenient, no-fuss plan.

Fertilizing, weed control, grub control. Done. Expert tree and shrub services that keep bugs from feasting on your trees and shrubs: Double done. 

We’ve got your back. 

Got a few minutes? That’s all you need to get started.

Call us at (208) 656-9131 or fill out the form on this page. Then kick back and relax in your healthy, thriving trees and shrubs.

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Image Source: tree injection, spider mites

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