NottiCaldo
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Euonymus Japonica Bravo ~ Looking for advice

Hi all,

I recently purchased a"Euonymus Japonica Bravo" plant, and - to my horror - it seems always to be attracting Bluebottles, flies and 'mini'-wasps (well, they look like wasps but much smaller).

Now, I don't mind too much these 'wasp' things but... I hate the bluebottles and flies... especially as the plant is in a container on my patio and not far from my kitchen door.

i. Why does it attract these unwelcome insects?
ii. How do I safely stop this?

Advice would be much appreciated.

Thanks, in advance.

bullthistle
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I am not an entomoligist so I cannot say whether you mis-identified what you have or not however euonymous scale is indicative of euonymous as are aphids and normally there maladies arise because there is a host somewhere close by. Somethings work and some don't so you'll have to research it unless someone here comes up with something specific but scales are indeed hard to remove.

NottiCaldo
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Location: Edinburgh, Scotland UK

Hi

Thanks for your response. However, firstly, there are absolutely no hosts in the vicinity that could attract these pests.

Furthermore, I have many other potted plants close by and they are not at all bothered.

The insects concerned are definitely not "mis-identified". They are a combination of houseflies, bluebottles (like giant houseflies) and - sort of - 'mini-wasps'. My big concern is these horrible flies though. They seem to buzz around and in-and-out-of the spherical bush part, and seem attracted to the small bud-like parts of the plant. So, I can definitely say that it is the plant that is attracting them.

Thanks for your reply, anyhow.

Best regards.

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rainbowgardener
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Something is attracting them. Probably not the plant itself. I'd check it closely. If it has aphids or whiteflies or scale, they exude a sweet, sticky substance called honeydew. This can attract a variety of other insects that like the sweet, including the flies and wasps.

I would spray the plant thoroughly with a soapy water solution (real soap, not detergent) including undersides of the leaves. Then rinse. However, look very closely. If it is aphids the soapy water solution should take care of it. If it is scale insects (they just look like little bumps and don't move and can be hard to spot) they have a waxy outer covering and the soapy water won't bother them. The solution for scale insects is to touch each one individually with a qtip soaked in rubbing alcohol. Then rinse the plant to get all the honey dew off.
Twitter account I manage for local Sierra Club: https://twitter.com/CherokeeGroupSC Facebook page I manage for them: https://www.facebook.com/groups/65310596576/ Come and find me and lots of great information, inspiration

NottiCaldo
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Thanks for that.

Ah, so "scale" is an insect? Sorry, I'm not a gardener in the true sense of the word, so I wasn't sure what was meant by this (including in the first response I received to my query).

I'll try the saopy water advice first.

Thanks.

NottiCaldo
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FAO rainbowgardener

Hello rainbowgardener,

Just thought I'd let you know that I have tried the soapy water suggestion and something positive seems to have happened.

Since trying out your initial suggestion, there has noticeably been less flies hovering around the plant... just the occasional one or two, while before there were hoards of them flying in and out of the plant.

I don't understand, as I do know what aphids look like but I didn't notice any at all.

Will the soapy water kill off the culprits or should I be thinking along the lines of a pesticide of some sort?

Best regards

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rainbowgardener
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If it is something soft bodied like aphids or whiteflies, the soapy water should take care of them, though you may need to repeat it once a week or so as eggs hatch out. If it is something hardbodied like the scale insects the soapy water won't bother them.

You really need to keep looking closely at under side of leaves, leaf axils, see if you can spot the culprits.

The soapy water also washed the honeydew off (or most of it, it's kind of sticky), so there's less sweets to attract the flies and wasps.
Twitter account I manage for local Sierra Club: https://twitter.com/CherokeeGroupSC Facebook page I manage for them: https://www.facebook.com/groups/65310596576/ Come and find me and lots of great information, inspiration

NottiCaldo
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Thanks!

TN Lizzie
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Chiming in late but...

Here is some good information for dealing with these plants and their critters:
http://oces.okstate.edu/canadian/horticulture/euonymus-scale/

:shock:

I have 2 plants I will go spray right now!
I grow plants, animals and kids!

ESHC Greenhouse Mary
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Re: Euonymus Japonica Bravo ~ Looking for advice

Here in Maryland USA I have Hover Flies that swarm my Euonymous. They are a beneficial "little wasp" looking thing. Actually like little bees, if you get close enough or yellow jackets to the untrained eye or from a bit farther off.

@ESHCGreenhouseMary

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