Usually seen starting the end of June into July, these beetles, unfortunately, do not discriminate on what types of plants they feed on—leaving behind skeletonized leaves and completely defoliated plants in their wake. One beetle may not cause much damage, but they like to feed in groups.
There is hope for your garden. Although it is impossible to get rid of Japanese beetles entirely, these controls can help keep them in check.
What We Recommend:
- Hand Pick: Each morning, pick them off plants and toss them into a bucket of soapy water. If you get the “scouts” that are the first to arrive, it will significantly reduce the overall population.
- Diatomaceous Earth: Also, organic. Kills insects that come into contact with it or ingest it within 48 hours. Use by applying a light dusting on plants.
- Bonide Neem Oil: Is an excellent all-purpose insecticide, miticide, fungicide for organic gardening. It is also safe to use around pets and children. Just follow the directions on the bottle. Will burn plants if applied during the heat of the day.
- St. Gabriel Milky Spore: Prevention is the best medicine. Place down Milky Spore to kill future grubs that turn into Japanese Beetles, following the directions on the bag's back.
We Do Not Recommend:
- Japanese Beetle Traps: Many people ask about Japanese Beetle traps, which are out on the market. We do not carry them here at the store; the reason is they attract more beetles to your garden than you may have had previously, and they are not a very good means of eradication.