Meadow Spittlebugs boggs.47 Fri, 05/05/2017 - 17:46
I came across an impressive stand of Musk Thistle (Carduus nutans) earlier this week that was heavily infested with Meadow Spittlebug (Philaenus spumarius). Flower stalks of this biennial weed are currently bolting from the rosette stage. Virtually every thistle stem appeared to be festooned with the tell-tale frothy, spittle-like masses characteristic of this and other spittlebugs. The frothy masses are produced by spittlebug nymphs (family Aphrophoridae); adults of these insects are called "froghoppers."
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Joe Boggs
ETC Two-Step Control Method (Violence: Reader Discretion is Advised) boggs.47 Fri, 05/05/2017 - 15:35
Eastern tent caterpillar (ETC) (Malacosoma americanum) silk nests are now large enough and the accompanying defoliation evident enough to be very noticeable in Ohio. The nests are located in branch forks and they reveal that population densities and caterpillar developmental rates vary widely across the state. I've driven long stretches recently without seeing a single nest on trees flanking the highway only to round a curve or top a hill to arrive in an ETC wonderland.
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Joe Boggs

Peaches Are From China

  The Latin binomial for peaches is Prunus persica, which is a bit misleading. The genus name is fine – Prunus, a genus in the rose family (Rosaceae) that includes peaches and nectarines, plums, cherries, almonds, and apricots. This reference to Persia (present day Iraq) is a misnomer, since peaches originate from China, which today by far out produces all other countries in edible peach production.  Peaches eventually made it to Persia, then to Europe, then from Spanish explorers to the New World, where they were planted into orchards in Georgia, the Peach State by the...

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Jim Chatfield
ODA Gypsy Moth Treatments Continue Next Week stone.91 Thu, 05/04/2017 - 06:56

Spring is a busy time of the year when it comes to gypsy moth management.  Below is a news release distributed by the Ohio Department of Agriculture (ODA).  This release, videos, treatment maps and other communications can be found directly on the ODA website at:  http://www.agri.ohio.gov/divs/plant/gypsy/gypsy-index.aspx

 

The ODA will soon begin aerial treatments designed to control the gypsy moth population in Ohio. Treatments on 1,135 acres in Hancock, Hardin, Lucas, Marion and Union counties will...

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Amy Stone
Scouting For Viburnum Leaf Beetle stone.91 Thu, 05/04/2017 - 05:50

The viburnum leaf beetle (VLB) (Pyrrhalta viburni) is a non-native invasive species that is making Ohio its home - well at least some of the buckeye state.  While the insect has been detected and is known to be in the northern portion of the state, we are encouraging all Ohioans to monitor for the pest and become aware of signs and symptoms if you aren't familiar with exotic invader. 

 

Last week, Mary Visco, horticulturist with the Toledo Botanical Garden (TBG) in Toledo, Ohio was scouting the viburnums in the Garden and noticed first instar larvae had hatched and...

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Amy Stone
Curtis E. Young
Gnarled Oak Leaf Midge Galls boggs.47 Wed, 05/03/2017 - 18:38
I've recently gotten e-mail messages with images of a gnarly looking leaf gall appearing on pin oaks in Cincinnati, OH, and Lexington, KY. The unsightly, lumpy growths are produced by a gnat-like gall-midge (Macrodiplosis niveipila, family Cecidomyiidae) and have the descriptive common name of Gnarled Oak Leaf Midge Galls.
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Joe Boggs

A Nostoc Tour de Force

Our warm, wet spring has provided ideal conditions for the rise of a strange looking organism with a scientific name that sounds like a '70s California happening: Nostoc commune. This bizarre organism may look as if an agglomeration of rubbery yellowish-green to bluish-black material is "bubbling-up" in the open spaces in Ohio landscapes as well as gravel driveways.
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Joe Boggs
Flower Celebration chatfield.1 Tue, 05/02/2017 - 17:11

  A lovely tradition of celebrating diversity (Oslava Květin) was started by Norbert Čapek, a Czech Unitarian, in 1923, with flowers as symbols of the universality of nature and ecumenical love. Start your own flower celebration in your home, for every business meeting, with your customers, sharing the beauty of flowers – especially this time of year: this “lusty month of May” (from Camelot). Everyone bring a flower! Here are a few floral fineries from my home and neighbors.

  The cover image for this bygl-...

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Jim Chatfield
Hydrangea Leaftier Oddball Damage boggs.47 Tue, 05/02/2017 - 16:45
I first came across the odd looking handiwork of Hydrangea Leaftier Moth (Family Tortricidae; Olethreutes ferriferana) caterpillars several years ago on its native namesake host in Clifton Gorge in Greene County, OH. Since that time, I've commonly found this leaftier on wild and cultivated hydrangeas at other locations.
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Joe Boggs
Holey Oak Leaves! boggs.47 Tue, 05/02/2017 - 16:32
Look closely at developing oak leaves for Spiny Oak Sawfly (Periclista albicollis) larvae. The small, light-green, semi-transparent larvae have shiny black head capsules and are covered with rows of forked (bifurcated) spines. Their small size coupled with their coloration allows these larvae to easily blend with their leaf-food background.
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Joe Boggs