Q:

How do I get rid of a bag of worms on my pine tree?

A:

A bucket of soapy water, pruning shears and an appropriate pesticide can be used to remove bagworms from pine trees. The process of removing the worms may require several weekends during the early summer or early autumn.

  1. Cut the bagworms off the tree

    An effective way to remove bagworms is to cut the bag off of the tree branch with sharp pruning shears before the larvae in the sack have hatched. Cut the sack off where it connects to the branch, and place it in a heavy garbage bag to reduce the risk of reinfestation.

  2. Use pesticide

    When bagworms are located in high branches, treating the tree with pesticides may be more effective than cutting each worm sack off individually. Apply pesticide containing neem oil or permethrin in late June or early July for optimal results. Each pine tree on the property should be thoroughly treated with the pesticide. Treat the trees in September, which is when the male worms are most active.

  3. Remove additional sacks

    After spraying the tree with pesticide, locate any remaining sacks, and remove them from the tree manually. The sacks can be placed in a bucket of soapy water to ensure the live worms in the sack are eliminated.


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