A leaf miner is any one of numerous species of insects in which the larval stage lives in, and eats, the leaf tissue of plants. The vast majority of leaf-mining insects are moths, sawflies and some beetles.
Larvae mine their way through leaves creating blisters that often look like yellow, squiggly lines in the leaves.
Note: A leafminer attacks a wide variety of plants but commonly attacks citrus trees
The life cycle of a leaf miner has the following stages:
4. Adult moth
Adults do not damage plants and live only 1 to 2 weeks. Adult moths are most active in the morning and the evening and spend the day resting on the undersides of leaves, but are rarely seen.
Eggs hatch in 3-6 days. Often there are several larvae within each mine.
The newly hatched legless larvae will burrow into the interior of the leaves to begin feeding. When the larvae are mature they will chew through the leaf surface, drop to the ground, and pupate.
- Weed control helps reduce populations
- Remove infected leaves and put them in a bin, not compost.
- Avoid pruning live branches more than once a year, so that the cycles of flushing are uniform and short. Once the leaves harden, the pest will not be able to mine the leaves.
Leafminer Recipe: Homemade white oil
1 part oil (olive, sunflower, fractionated coconut, any oil will do)
1 part dishwasher liquid
1 part water
Add to a small jar- shake till white- then this is your concentrated solution. Put 1 tablespoon to a spray bottle with water and spray affected plants.
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