Hedge eating insect: Oystershell Scale

Notice your cotoneaster hedge looking sparse, bare, dry or brown? Your hedge may be suffering from an Oystershell Scale infestation, and it’s deadly.

Image credit: Jennifer Keene/CBC News

Thriving in the spring season, this pest eats hedges whole and spreads at an alarming rate. In some cases, hedges can be treated with a dormant oil to control the spread. Yet, measures as drastic as cutting hedges to the ground are often necessary to prevent further damage from these pests.

Image credit: Danielle Nerman/CBC News

Given their name because of their resemblance to a sea creature, this insect resembles the shell of a mussel. If your hedge has the symptoms, look closely at the branches for bark that looks unhealthy (dry, bumpy or rough). This bark is in fact covered in the insects, which thrive on the host plant and cause significant damage.

If you suspect an infestation, taking care of it early is key. We’ve got you covered! Let’s protect our beautiful cotoneaster hedges.

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