Rednecked Cane Borers are an important pest of raspberry and blackberry plants from the Gulf of Mexico throughout the Eastern United States and into Canada. The adults lay eggs on the trunk of the plants and once the larvae hatch, they circle the cane in a spiral and girdle the cane leaving a viscous material that protects the larvae. This makes it hard to control the larvae. This produces a swelling in the plant (like a gall) and as larvae grow they feed deeper into the wood. The larvae winter in the cane and in March the mature larvae form oval pupal cells in the pith. Then, in late April they pupate. During the summer, the adults chew their way out of the cane and feed on foliage before beginning the egg-laying cycle.
To control – prune all canes that show signs of infestation. Destroy this wood, do not compost or use it in the garden. During the late summer, use pyrethrin. sprays or paint the canes with the mix to destroy the larvae before they burrow into the wood.
Check out the control products shown below. For more information on controlling boring insects, please see our Borer Control page.
© Copyright Photo by Vincent J. Hickey.