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VLB in Italy - While vacationing in Italy last
September, Charlie Mazza, Senior Extension Associate in Cornell's Department of Horticulture, spotted this VLB damage. "It was at a place called Mount Olivette, not too far from Siena in southern Tuscany," he reports. "I'm not sure what species of viburnum it was, but the berries look bluish." VLBs are native to Europe and came to New York through Canada.
Snowball recovery [10/24/06] There's hope, reports Donna in Cortland County: "Here is this year's picture of my Snowball Viburnum which was damaged badly for several years. I saw a lot of egg sites but sprayed them with Sevin and no adults. Here is the way it was in May 2004, no leaves hardly even tried to come out in the spring, there was not much food for the critters that year. This bush should have been all green with flower buds forming." Donna also sent us damage pictures back in 2003.
Vermont damage [6/5/06] John in Weybridge reports, "I have a generally healthy looking bush but the attached pictures show that significant damage is visible on the lower branches. The other image confirms identification of the larva of the leaf beetle."
Bug preying on adult [8/3/05] Bob in Vermont passes along this picture that " ... appears to be an insect eating an adult VLB," says Cornell entomologist, Paul Weston. "I can't tell the species from these photos, but it appears to be an immature predatory bug (Hemipteran). We have seen another predatory bug attacking viburnum leaf beetles in the Ithaca area (a different species, I believe), but the numbers are not very large." Find more pictures of beneficial insects preying on VLBs at Managing viburnum leaf beetles.
Prince Edward Island damage [7/19/05] - Ben Wolfe, a graduate student at the
Klironomos Lab at the University of Guelph sends "photos of VLB damage from Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island, Canada that I took this past week while on a trip there. I also saw VLB damage in Nova Scotia, but in both locations it was only on Viburnums in landscaped areas, and not in natural areas. I didn't really look in natural areas though. I will enter my observations in the online database ASAP."
Erie shrubs bounce back [10/14/04] - Larry from Erie County says, "Compare this picture to the one I sent you of the same bush in June. (See more pictures from Larry below.) This shows how these tough plants can recover. After devastating this bush, the larva, still immature, apparently starved, as there followed no adult infestation." Wet soil may also have played a role.
More Erie County damage [6/20/04] - Tim in Erie County photographed damaged viburnums along a powerline on his property on June 6 and the culprits (vlb larvae). Tim says his property is completely wooded, except for a 30' X 500' power line clearing. "I've been encouraging native shrubs and grapevines for bird and wildlife use. Viburnum dentatum is the dominant species in the clearing and along the edges of the woods. A dense tangle of Viburnum established quickly and has thrived with negligible insect damage for over a decade. This spring I noticed a few leaves with minor insect damage. Within a week, the majority of the clearing was under attack. Less than a week after that, every leaf had been stripped to a skeleton of ribs. The Viburnum at the woods edges have only been partially stripped. There are stands of Viburnum dentatum thousands of feet long on many roads near me. No other stand was as heavily damaged as mine, but all show at least some damage. The Viburnum acerifolium in my woods grows in small clusters and has shown no signs of damage so far."
Erie County damage [6/7/04] - Larry in Erie County sent pictures of whole fields of devastated arrowwoods as well as individual bushes. Jim in Erie County sent pictures of his damaged highbush cranberries.
First siting in Otsego County [5/23/04] - Thanks to John in Otsego County, we can add another county to the list of those infested with viburnum leaf beetles. "Thought these pictures of a cultivated Viburnum in our front yard might be helpful. This is one of three bushes devastated by the Viburnum Leaf Beetle. I hadn't previously paid attention to the bushes.
They're back ... [5/3/04] - Sally in Onondaga reports that eggs hatched in her yard this past weekend on her V. carlesii. Here's another picture of a larvae feeding on a young leaf.
Ready to hatch [4/20/04] - Sally in Onondaga County reports: I've been checking my two Korean Spice Bushes and watching the egg cases that I saved for observation this spring. Took this photo on April 18th and I think it shows the eggs within the opened cases fairly well. The cases on the other bush I'm tracking were still closed. I will try to take a photo on a daily basis and will send a "hatching" photo when the time comes.
British Columbia infestation [4/15/04] - Victoria in British Columbia writes: The past week has been sunny and warm (temperatures in the 20s Celsius) and I just noticed the first larvae on viburnums on the south side or our house yesterday. Last year this bush was virtually destroyed by these beetles, and I noticed a multitude of lady bug larvae munching on them. Over the winter I cut back about 75% of the bush, hopefully eliminating many eggs and giving the tree (it's about 15 feet tall) more light and air.
Branch infested with egg-laying sites [5/15/03] from Liz in Knox County, Maine, who writes "Too bad about my viburnum. It's loaded with eggs. Once I get a better ID on the variety, I'll send data. I hope to learn how to save it, especially if I don't have to use pesticides." That is a nasty infestation, Liz. Trim out those egg-laying sites before the eggs hatch. Later, Liz reports: "My viburnum recovered pretty well in May, but was
decimated again during the summer. I'll do a better job of pruning out the
infestation but will leave an egg-laden branch to let you know the hatch
Miserable things [6/14/03] from Priscilla in Lyman, NH, who writes "Here are the leaf beetle larva ruining my highbush cranberry plants back in June. Now it's August 1 and there are mature beetles mating and eating the cranberries. Miserable things!"
Larvae damage sentimental favorite [6/18/03] from Donna in Cortland County, N.Y., who writes "The bush has been growing in the yard
for many years and is now much bigger than the picture of it in bloom [the photo in the background of the damaged leaves]. The larva ate all the
leaves except the very top. ... The bush was
a rooting from my grandparents farm in western New York and is sentimental as well as
ornamental. Here's another picture from Donna showing both egg-laying sites and larval feeding damage on leaves.
Will it make it? [6/20/03] from Janet in Onondaga County, N.Y., who writes "This is what one of my arrowwood viburnums
looks like after the third year of being attacked. Each spring it has leafed out, and there are signs of the second growth of leaves again. But I don't expect it will survive if all its leaves are eaten each year!"
Severe larva damage [6/23/03] reports Rick from Ithaca, NY (Tompkins County). "I saw larvae a few weeks ago. Now 90 percent of the arrowwood leaves have died. V. lentago about 10 feet away was undamaged. This trend occurs over most of the property. Most V. dentatum has injury and V. lentago is untouched.
Dentatum decimated [7/9/03] from Larry in Erie County, who writes that the viburnums have "started second growth of leaves. When adults emerge they will have plenty to eat." Larry also sends along this picture of a nearly denuded ornamental V.acerfolium.
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