Spring Lanternfly Treatment Options
In the spring, spotted lanternfly (SLF) nymphs hatch. These young versions of the SLF can only walk and hop. During the spring and early summer these SLF nymphs will be black in color with white spots.
As summer comes, the nymphs will turn red and have white spots. This is the last step before they become flying adults in the later summer and fall.
SLF Nymph Treatments
- Tree Banding
- Insecticide Treatments
Tree Banding for Spotted Lanternfly
Since the nymph stages of the SLF cannot fly, applying a sticky tape to the tree can capture the crawling insects. This process is called “tree banding”. A band of sticky tape is wrapped around the tree with the sticky side out.
As the spotted lanternfly nymphs crawl up or down the tree, they become trapped on the tape. This method only works when the SLF is in the nymph stage since it cannot yet fly.
Protect birds and squirrels
You should install a screening over the tape to prevent non-target captures on the tape. Non-target captures are anything that you did not intend to capture. Since birds and squirrels often are found on trees, it is very possible for them to get stuck on the tape as well.
I use a 1/2″ hardware cloth that I wrap around the tree over the sticky band. This allows the crawling SLF nymphs to still get stuck on the tape but does not allow birds or squirrels to become trapped.
Remember, the sticky tree band does not know that you are trying to capture Spotted Lanternfly nymphs so please protect the tape from animals.
The tape should be checked and replaced as often as it becomes less sticky or full. Rain or large amounts of insects can quickly make your tree band ineffective.
What can I use to band my tree?
You can find “official” tree banding tape at a hardware store or online. This tape will usually be bright yellow in color and may have some insects printed on it to attract insects. I have found that a cost effective equivalent to this “official” tree band is to use duct tape.
You can wrap duct tape around the tree to perform the same task as a tree band. Of course make sure that the sticky side is facing out. You can either wrap in on itself to hold it in place or use a thumbtack.
No matter what method of tree band you use, remember to cover it so that non-target species do not become trapped on it.
Chemical-free lanternfly treatment method
Tree banding is a great, chemical-free option to help control the lanternfly nymph population on your trees. Remember that every lanternfly killed now will be one less you will have to deal with in the coming months.
Chemical Treatments for SLF Nymphs
There are 2 types of chemical or insecticide treatment options for the SLF nymphs. They are topical applications and systemic applications
Topical Chemical Applications for SLF
Topical treatments for the spotted lanternfly nymphs involves spraying the tree with an approved insecticide. A homeowner could perform this on a smaller tree with an approved insecticide. ALWAYS read and follow the label on the chemical that your are using.
The purpose of the topical treatment is to kill the insect on contact as it touches the tree. This treatment is effective at quickly lowering the spotted lanternfly nymph population on and around your tree.
Rain and other environmental factors can impact how long the chemical will last. Commercial pesticide applicators use chemicals that will last longer than the homeowner grade insecticide that you find at the grocery or hardware store.
Systemic SLF Treatments
Systemic spotted lanternfly treatments involve a pest control company injecting an insecticide into the root system of the tree. When the tree uptakes this chemical, it can protect the tree from piercing insects like the SLF.
Systemic treatments are a good solution for long term protection of the tree. The downside is that it will not work quickly and relies on the insect piercing into the tree in order to work.
Think of systemic treatments like taking an antibiotic from the doctor. It allows your body to fight off an infection from the inside.
Chester County Lanternfly Treatments
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Our affordable, effective, and professional spotted lanternfly treatments can protect your trees and your property from this invasive pest.