Click below to listen to my Garden Bite radio show: Earwigs and Japanese beetles – a B movie
That really sounds like a B movie! And it kinda is! The earwigs have been awful this year. At least where I am. We had a lot of rain and they multiplied!
The adult earwig is readily identified by a pair of prominent appendages that resemble forceps at the tail end of its body. Ahh, delightful! The name comes from a myth that they actually would get into your ear and crawl into your brain. I shudder to even think about it.
It was disgusting! I used Safer insecticidal soap. I got most of them. The thing about this non-toxic soap is that it MUST hit the pest.
Earwigs munch on some flowers and leaves but their main meal are soft-bodied insects we don’t want such as aphids. That’s why normally they’re not a problem. If you are seeing copious amounts of earwigs, you can trap them with a moistened rolled-up newspaper, old tuna fish can, or an eight to ten inch section of garden hose. Place traps in shaded areas where earwigs are most likely to hide during the daytime. Check traps in the morning and shake the insects into a pail of soapy water.
And then there’s the Japanese Beetle. These small, metallic-green beetles have adapted to our climate. You may see the adults feeding on your rose bushes from June through August. If you do, hand pick them off or use an insecticide that says it will kill Japanese beetles.
You want to kill the grubs… here’s a link to the University of MN Extension with a plethora of information on the Japanese Beetle – they eat a LOT of different plants.