Having a beautiful yard requires a lot of time, upkeep, and patience. Even the most experienced gardener can’t prevent insects wreaking havoc on their yard. In Colorado, you must watch for several insects in your yard. In this blog post, we will outline the eight of the worst insects for your garden.

1. Emerald Ash Borer

One of the worst bugs you can find in your yard is the Emerald Ash Borer (EAB), a green beetle that originates from Asia and Eastern Russia. In 2002, infested shipping materials accidentally introduced the beetle to the United States. Today, the EAB is responsible for the destruction of tens of millions of ash trees. It primarily resides in firewood east of the Rocky Mountain Region. Many Colorado residents also report finding the EAB in their wooded trees

2. Mountain Pine Beetle

Another pesky beetle to look for in your yard is the Mountain Pine Beetle. This beetle has a hard black exterior and grows to approximately five millimeters long. While the species usually only damages dying trees, recent climate change altered that. In 1996, there was a Mountain Pine Beetle outbreak in Rocky Mountain National Park. During that time, the beetles destroyed millions of acres of ponderosa and lodge pole pine trees.

3. Aphids

Aphids can be a huge pest in Colorado. They are small, pear shaped, and range in color from greens to reds and greys. If you suspect aphids may be infesting your yard even if you haven’t seen one, there are a few warning signs to look out for. Aphids leave a honeydew-like substance excretion on leaves. Homeowners may be able to rid their yard of aphids on their own, but larger problems generally require an arborist.

4. Scale

These insects affect a variety of plants and trees throughout the Front Range.  They feed on the nutrients and water of the plant, decreasing their health and vigor.  Each variety of scale affects a certain type of plant.  Having an Arborist properly identify the insect is important in determining the recommended control.

5. Mites

Mites can feed on trees, shrubs, turf and garden plants.  This insect is in the Arachnid family, the same as spiders.  Buildup of this insect can severely injure the plants.  Dry conditions tend to increase population levels to points where control is required.

6. Lawn Grubs

Grubs tend to be a problem in lawns later in the season.  The larva feed under the grass in the root systems.  The result is a patchy appearance to your lawn.  Some signs of a grub problem are animals digging in your yard, and your turf easily pulling up.  Control will be required if populations get too damaging.

7. IPS Beetle

IPS beetle is similar to the Mountain Pine Beetle.  This is a significant insect that has killed off many pines and spruce along the Front Range.  Once a tree has been infested, the only course of action is to remove the tree.  A preventative program is recommended to protect your valuable evergreens.

8. Elm Leaf Beetle

The Elms seem to have quite a variety of insects that can cause significant problems with them.  One of the more damaging insects is the Elm Leaf Beetle.  These leaf feeding Beetles can almost completely defoliate a tree.  We have noticed a resurgence in the insect in the past few years.