solomon's seal sawfly sawflies hard at work every year,not long after flowering,the leaves of my solomon's seal are completely eaten away by small grey/green caterpillars. You can make your own sawfly killer by mixing dish soap and water. If you prefer not to use chemicals then the larvae can be removed by hand. Required fields are marked *. So, regularly just run your thumb and forefinger up the stems and you’ll kill the bugs before they get started and will even be left with clean hands! I am rather fond of the sawfly as it is actually a beautiful little insect and part of our country’s biodiversity. Be vigilant in May and June because the larvae do a lot of damage very quickly. Yes – treat the soil with nematodes as directed on the packet – they use the larvae as a host and eventually kill them. If you prefer not to use chemicals then the larvae can be removed by hand. The only problem is that you need to do it daily to make sure you bring their numbers down. The adults aren’t a problem as they feed on pollen. when the host plant is identified. Adults May and June. The larvae strip the plant of its leaves very rapidly. If I pick them off and put them on the bird table will my bird visitors deal with them for me? Most of the damage happens from May through until early August, but this feeding period may differ slightly from area to area and  from one season to the next. What eats the sawfly caterpillars? soapy garlic spray didn't seem to get rid of them and, as they attack after flowering and seem to leave every other plant alone, I didn't want to use totally lethal chemical sprays. Solomon’s seal is unlucky enough to have a particularly serious sawfly pest whose larvae can strip it or the related Polygonatum plants bare. Towards the end of the season these (now well fed) larvae will move down the stripped-bare plant and in to the soil where they pupate and so successfully overwinter, ready to emerge as adults next year. is there a best time of year to apply nematodes, you can apply nematodes any time really as long as there is no frost about and the ground isn’t frozen (not much chance of that in this heatwave ). As soon as you see the larvae spray the plant with a contact insecticide. The adult sawfly has a special organ called an ovipositor  which is able to cut into the plant so that she can lay her eggs into the leaf stalks; you may see purple-brown ‘scars’ indicating where this happened – a useful warning sign that you’re likely to see an outbreak of the larvae. Definitely worth looking out for it, and regularly too, it can devastate very, very quickly! There will no need to pick the caterpillars off if you do this one simple thing: The female sawfly deposits her eggs under the skin of the stem, usually in a fleshy lower part. The organic method to rid the plants of these pests is to pick them off (eeeek and double yuck !!). You can see where this is done because a discolouration develops. The pupation takes place in the ground. How to get rid of it. Affected plants will survive but won’t flourish. Can’t say I had heard of this one. Yard Force AMIRO400i Robotic Lawnmower with WI-FI... WORX WR110MI Wi-Fi Enabled Robotic Mower, 20 V,... Lawnmaster L10 Robotic Lawnmower 20V Max Auto... 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These are a very common and widespread pest and will also strip a plant bare within hours, usually just leaving the tougher mid-veins of the leaves in place! Whether it is ornamental plants or edibles that are under attack from sawflies, they are unlikely to be killed but the loss of so many leaves will mean they are put under a lot of stress so once the pests are sorted, do all you can to give the plants a bit of extra TLC by providing plenty to drink,  a bit of general fertiliser and maybe even a mulch of well-rotted manure or garden compost. This can be used not only on ornamental plants like Solomon’s seal and other flowers suffering sawfly attack,  but also on gooseberries, should yours succumb to one of the gooseberry sawflies. Regular checks on Solomon’s seal and Polygonatum plants should mean that you can remove the larvae as they appear and before they do too much damage. The adult sawfly is 8 or 9 mm long and all black. The female adults have a saw-like ovipositor which the use to cut into soft plant tissues and lay eggs within it. Anywhere that Solomon's-seal is found. This website was set up for gardening enthusiasts to enjoy expert articles, a busy gardening forum and classified section. Handpicking may be the only control measure you need to control light infestations. The larvae (which do the damage) are grey-white and up to 20mm long with distinctive black heads. Your email address will not be published. Be vigilant in May and June because the larvae do a lot of damage very quickly. Then spray it directly onto the larvae to kill them. The larvae of the Solomon's seal sawfly (Phymatocera aterrima) are voracious eaters.

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