Cicada Damage

06/26/2014
MAA Members reporting Cicada damage to Aronia plantsCicada Damage

A couple of days ago, an MAA member from Leon, IA reported damage to her Aronia plants:

The 17 year brood of cicadas in the area was the suspected culprit.
Another member (St. Charles, IA) with similar cicada damage to his plants replied with this source: http://www.gardenersnet.com/atoz/cicada.htm. It appears to have very good coverage of the basic topics relating to cicada infestation, life span, reporting, siting data (http://www.gardenersnet.com/atoz/cicada-watch-sighting-2014.htm), recommended prevention, etc. According to the source, the best protection is ¼” netting wrapped all around the tree or bush. Mature trees are not often affected negatively, but younger plants can experience severe damage, since the female creates a slit in the branches (1/2” or less in diameter) to lay eggs, which subsequently weakens the branch, causing breaks and possible plant death.
This member estimates a 15-25% yield loss due to cicada damage and believes his 4-year plants will survive, but that first and second year plants may experience some plant morbidity.
Northern Illinois may be spared from periodic (13 or 17 year cycle cicada broods) this year. A Crete, Illinois member offered this link explaining the periodic infestation and its impact on northern Illinois:
http://web.extension.illinois.edu/state/newsdetail.cfm?NewsID=30825.
MAA would like members to contact us to report your experiences with cicadas this year and what type and of damage you may be experiencing along with the extent of that damage.
Please email Scott Boersma, scottboersma47@hotmail.com with whatever information you may have regarding cicadas in your area.

Thank you,
MAA Board

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