Oh no! Lanternflies in Ocean County! What to do now?

When it comes to gardening, there are some insects you like and some you don’t. The “spotted lanternfly” is one of those insects that makes it onto the “hated” list. The “spotted lanternfly” is destructive when it comes to gardening.

According to the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture, “Mottled lantern causes severe damage including oozing sap, wilting, leaf curling, and dieback of trees, vines, crops, and many other types of plants. In addition to plant damage, when spotted lanterns feed, they excrete a sugary substance, called honeydew, which promotes the growth of black sooty mold. This mold is harmless to humans but it causes damage to plants.”

Shawn Michael

Shawn Michael

This week we discovered “spotted lanternflies” in my wife’s yard here in Ocean County. Oh no! Now what? Well, the first thing we did after identifying the insect was to research and come up with a game plan.

Princeton factory put together a reference list on how to destroy “spotted lantern flies” and they have ten tips you can incorporate into your garden. The article also contains an email and phone number to report findings of “spotted lantern flies” here in the Garden State.

Another resource we have discovered is Neem Oil. neem oil can be used for certain insect and fungal disease problems. Concentrated Neem oil is diluted with water and applied to affected vegetation. We ordered the oil and will use it once a week to ten days to hopefully drive away the “spotted lanternfly”.

According to National Pesticide Information Center, neem oil appears to be safe for humans. According Gardening skills, neem oil is nearly non-toxic to birds, fish, bees, and wildlife, and studies have shown no cancer or other disease-causing results from its use. This makes neem oil very safe to use if applied correctly. We’ll let you know how it goes in our garden.

Shawn Michael

Shawn Michael

There is also a wildlife-safe trap that you can use as well. Take a moment to watch this “how to” video.

Do not hesitate to share your advice and/or your comments regarding the “spotted lantern fly”

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