Lily beetle damage

Lily beetle larvae

Question ...

My lilies are looking terrible! Lots of ragged holes and closer inspection has revealed some bright red insects. Help!

Answer ...

The bright red insects are adult lily beetle. This increasingly common pest feeds on lilies, Soloman's seal and Fritillaries. They can detect a lily from 3 miles away! The small reddish-brown grubs also feed on the leaves of these plants and have the particularly disgusting habit of covering themselves in excrement as protection against predators. Remove and destroy any adults and grubs (although you might want to wash your hands thoroughly afterwards). Keep checking plants throughout the growing season, wiping off any eggs and slime covered larvae that you find on the leaves.

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