Pests

Get expert help from the RHS to deal with pests and other problems

vine weevil

Vine weevil

Keep a watchful eye for signs of vine weevil beetles nibbling the edges of leaves and their grubs who will be munching on roots below the surface.

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  • Sooty mould

    Sooty moulds

    The presence of sooty mould fungi usually indicates that a plant has become affected by a sap-sucking pest. Sooty moulds do not attack the plant directly, but their growth is unsightly and can reduce plant vigour by preventing photosynthesis.

  • Spotted wing drosophila HDC/The Red Brick Road Company Ltd

    Spotted wing drosophila

    Spotted wing drosophila (SWD) is a fruit fly that was first reported in the UK in 2012. Unlike most other fruit flies it can damage otherwise unblemished soft and stone fruit including strawberries, raspberries, blackberries, currants, blueberries, grapes, cherries and plums. The RHS first saw and identified samples via RHS Gardening Advice in summer 2015.

  • Narcissus eelworm

    Stem and bulb eelworm

    Many gardeners look forward to a spring display of bulbs, unfortunately the bulbs do not always give the expected display. One possible cause for failure is Ditylenchus dipsaci the stem and bulb eelworm which can cause poor growth and death in a wide range of plants, not just bulbs.

  • ©RHS SCN0006265

    Swift moth caterpillars

    Swift moth caterpillars are dirty-white with brown heads they live in the soil and can feed on plant roots and at the base of plant stems, causing plants to collapse.

  • Thuja blight

    Thuja blight

    Western red cedar (Thuja plicata) is a popular conifer, grown most commonly as hedging. Unfortunately, it can sometimes be attacked by Thuja blight, an unsightly disease of the foliage that can cause loss of vigour, particularly on young trees.

  • Magnesium deficiency shown by the tomato leaves. Credit:RHS/Tim Sandall.

    Tomatoes: leaf problems

    Although easy to grow and very rewarding, tomatoes can suffer from a range of easily preventable leaf problems.

  • ©RHS PUB0013784

    Tortrix moth caterpillars

    These moth caterpillars bind leaves together with silky threads and feed inside. They can affect a range of plants and in a glasshouse can cause damage throughout the year.

  • ©RHS_SCN0006303

    Vapourer moth

    The distinctive caterpillars of this moth feed on a wide range of shrubs and trees but they are rarely present in sufficient numbers to cause significant problems.

  • Viburnum beetle damage on Viburnum opulus

    Viburnum beetle

    Viburnum beetle can cause severe defoliation of some Viburnum species, especially V. tinus and V. opulus.

  • ©RHS SCN0006176

    Viburnum scale

    Viburnum scale affects Viburnum tinus and ivy (Hedera), often causing a heavy coating of honeydew and sooty mould. 

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