mercurynine
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What eating my hydrangea?

I have had this hydrangea for 3 seasons now and woke up to it looking like this the other morning. Almost half the plant is gone. Please help, never had this happen before!!
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GardeningCook
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Re: What eating my hydrangea?

I don't know where you're located, but around here Hydrangeas are "deer candy". Sometimes it takes them awhile to zone in on a local salad buffet, but they find it eventually. And that does look like deer damage to me.
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mercurynine
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Re: What eating my hydrangea?

we are located in southern ontario in a city so deer isn't really an option

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GardeningCook
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Re: What eating my hydrangea?

Do you have groundhogs? They're quite frequently citified.
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mercurynine
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Re: What eating my hydrangea?

I went to have a look as it for dark because it seems to happen then and found this guy crawling off the leaves. not sure what it is but could this be the culprit?
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luis_pr
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Re: What eating my hydrangea?

I am not good IDing insects but, if "it" is only one and you have not seen it "eat" the leaves then maybe not. Do you have wild bunnies? The damage seems to occurs mostly on the bottom part of the shrub, which would be within reach of bunnies. Leaf cutter bees would have made cuts resembling 1/2 circle so 'no' to those. Japanese Bettles? I guess you need to catch "it" in the act. May be a nocturnal insect so ck at night too.

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applestar
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Re: What eating my hydrangea?

I'm not much help either, but those majority of leaves with jagged damage do look like teeth marks and "ripped off with teeth in big chunks" marks rather than insects or slugs which tend to be rounded.

...so... (Not) deer, rabbits, squirrels?, birds?, rats? Dogs?

I do see some that have the more rounded/systematically chewed in teeny bites kind of damage on a few though.
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luis_pr
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Re: What eating my hydrangea?

Interesting Q&A regarding deer in southern ontario on the link below. Ran into it doing "deer research". I am not sure your scope of 'southern ontario' and the other person's is the same of course but it sounds like some deer can get close. Can you ask around if anyone nearby has also been affected with this problem? If they nibbled on your shrub, they may have nibbled on other persons' shrubs too.

https://answers.yahoo.com/question/inde ... 0canada%3F

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MichaelC
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Re: What eating my hydrangea?

mercurynine wrote:picture of scary insect
Yikes~!

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rainbowgardener
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Re: What eating my hydrangea?

I don't know what makes you think that deer in the city "isn't an option." I live four miles from downtown, right on a big, busy street. The backyards (ours and our neighbors) are pretty woodsy and we have had deer back there for years, but I used to think they would not come out in the front with cars whizzing by. So I didn't fence in the veggie bed I put in the front yard. It took them a little while to find it, but once they did, they ate all my tomatoes and some of the plants as well.

I have seen them out there doing it, so I know they are the culprits. I have seen deer walking right up sidewalks...

They are an over-populated plague and have adapted quite well to city life.

I agree that what you have is NOT insect damage and was done by some kind of four legger. Deer seem most likely to me.
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LIcenter
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Re: What eating my hydrangea?

It matches up with what my hosta's look like in my unfenced front yard. I have to agree on it being deer. Or a pack of voracious Box turtles! ;-)

luis_pr
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Re: What eating my hydrangea?

I researched the pest in the picture and the insect could be a culprit if you can confirm that it is a nocturnal adult root weevil. Most people try sticky barriers to prevent them from getting to the leaves. That type of insect can notch the hydrangea leaves causing damage similar to what your first picture had.

From the Connecticut Agric Extension Service: "Treating the soil with insect pathogenic nematodes may control the larvae and should be the first line of defense for landscape plantings. Acephate and fluvalinate are among the compounds registered for control of this pest in Connecticut, and may be applied when there is adult feeding and before egg laying starts. The usual timing for these foliar sprays is during May, June and July at three week intervals. Insecticide resistance is very common; be aware that adults may appear to be dead following contact with fluvalinate, but may recover from poisoning within a few days."

Organic friendly info: https://www.ces.ncsu.edu/depts/ent/notes ... lguide.pdf

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