Six Common Tree Pests in Florida

While there are a lot of things that can cause your tree’s death, tree pests are at the top of the list. While most pests tend to attack unhealthy trees, some could harm healthy ones, causing severe damage.

Fortunately, learning the common pests to look out for can go a long way in protecting your tree from damage.

In this article, our tree care professionals will share a list of six common tree pests in Florida, explaining what they are and the potential they can cause.

1. Dogwood Borers

Dogwood borers are small moths that can severely compromise your tree’s structural integrity and slow down new growth.

When a female borer lays its eggs, they hatch into larvae that burrow inside your tree, feeding on the wood. In extreme cases, they could permanently disfigure your tree, causing its death two or three years after the infestation.

2. Bark Beetles

Bark beetles, as their name implies, can cause potential damage to your tree’s bark. These pests bore into the bark to lay their eggs; the larvae that hatch from these eggs will also feed on the bark, making it more difficult to get necessary nutrients. In addition, many bark beetles carry blue-stain fungi, which can block water flow and kill the tree.

Sometimes, you can save your tree after a bark beetle infestation. In extreme cases, however, consulting tree removal experts in Palm Bay, FL, is the only way to protect the healthy trees nearby.

3. Aphids

These soft-bodied insects can cause a wide range of problems for plant owners. They feed on sap from your tree’s leaves and reproduce rapidly enough that combatting an infestation can be difficult. While spotting these tiny pests can be difficult, there are a couple of signs you can look for.

When trying to detect the presence of an infestation, inspect your tree for yellowed, stunted, curled, and sap-colored leaves. If you notice these issues, you may have an aphid problem.

4. Asian Citrus Psyllid

These tree pests have black heads and mottled brown bodies and emit a whitish, waxy substance that gives them a dusty look.

The Asian citrus psyllid creates larvae that nibble at a tree’s leaves and buds. However, it is the bacteria it carries that causes the most damage. Its bacteria cause citrus greening, a disease that infects a leaf’s sap and prevents nutrients from traveling through your tree’s vascular system. After a while, this nutrient deficiency causes tree veins to yellow and fruit to drop prematurely.

5. Gypsy Moth

Though gypsy moths are common in Florida, they are actually non-native pests. Originally from Europe, these invasive pests are one of the country’s most infamous defoliators. They are attracted to hardwood trees, like maples, oaks, and elms. The moths lay yellowish, tear-drop-shaped eggs that hatch into larvae that can cause complete defoliation in weeks.

6. Eastern Tent Caterpillars

Like the gypsy moth, the eastern tent caterpillar also causes defoliation, which could leave your tree vulnerable to other potential problems. Keep an eye out for unusual caterpillars and remove them if necessary.

Professional Tree Care

Pests can be huge problems for trees. They can cause extensive damage, from destroying bark to damaging leaves. In a worst-case scenario, you could even end up losing your tree entirely.

Thankfully, there are ways to protect your plants. Getting regular services from a professional can prevent tree death and keep your plants healthy. At East Coast Arbor Pro, we’re here to give you the services you need.

We are always ready to answer any question you might have, including, “Does cutting down trees increase property value?” Call us today at (321) 917-9342 to learn how we can keep your tree safe from deadly tree pests and discuss the potential dangers of a hollow tree on your property.

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