Pesticides are effective against Japanese beetles, but I don't recommend using them; they kill other bugs in the garden, including bees and beneficial insects.
|Japanese beetles destroying my roses|
The infestation seems to be worse already this year than last year. They are out much earlier and I'm already getting over 100 in my bucket each time I go out and hand pick them. I have a bad feeling that July could be a devastating time in the gardens.
I heard about Japanese beetle traps last year, but I heard both pros and cons to using the traps. The biggest con I heard was that the traps will attract Japanese beetles from all over the neighborhood to your yard.
|Japanese beetles destroying my canna lily leaves|
|Japanese beetle trap|
I decided to put the traps on the corner of our porch, which is on the other side of the yard from the infested plants. Plus it's in a spot where I can watch it from inside the house (morbid curiosity).
|Japanese beetle trap setup|
A word of advice before you setup one of these. I've used yellow jacket traps before and there's a warning on the label that says to assemble and hang the trap before you open the attractant because it will start attracting them immediately. I decided to take this same advice with the Japanese beetle trap (which is funny, because opening the attractant is the first step in the instructions).
So, I setup and hung the trap, then I opened the attractant. Boy, am I glad I did this. As soon as I climbed down the ladder, there were Japanese beetles flying at the trap from all directions. The beetles don't bite or sting, but having a bunch of them buzzing around and crawling on me while I tried assembling and hanging the trap would have been awful. Yuck!!
Seriously, within a few seconds there were already beetles in the trap and tons of them flying around towards the trap. Oh boy, I have a feeling I'm going to be disposing of these traps daily. Good thing the replacement bags are inexpensive.
|Japanese beetle trap at work, notice the beetles at the top near the gutter|
Trap is wide open on top, and I don't know how the beetles won't escape. Perhaps they can't fly back through the small funnel opening in the middle, or they're too dumb to figure it out. I don't care, as long as this works.
Have you used these traps before? What did you think?
Update July 2nd @9:45 pm - just over 24 hours later and the bag was over 1/4 full!! There must be a few hundred beetles in there. Nasty! I twist tied the bag shut at the narrow center, then removed the bag, tossed it in the garbage and replaced it with a new bag (after dark when the beetles weren't flying around of course!).