Forum home Problem solving

Blackfly on my Acer - is Ladybird Larvae a good solution?

Hello :) I have an Acer in my back garden that is pretty infested with black fly at the moment and I wondered if the solution might be a ladybird larvae product the like of which I can purchase from RHS store? It says there are 100 larvae per packet and that ‘a general guideline is to use 3-5 ladybird larvae per infested plant’ but I’m wondering how many I would use for an Acer tree and if it’s not all of them, what should I do with the rest of the larvae? 

Just seeking advice as I have not done this before. I vave attached a photo of the tree and a photo example of what most of the leaves look like when I stand underneath, if this helps?

(I live in Coleraine, Northern Ireland) 

Appreciate any steer you can give me, thanks!


  • Allotment BoyAllotment Boy North London Posts: 5,625
    edited May 2018
    The snag with a biological control like this,  there is no guarantee that they will stay on your Acer & not move on elsewhere. It is worth a try if you really do not want to use a spray though in this case if you want something that is not too strong then try Provado bug clear for fruit & veg. I have not seen an Aphid infestation on Acers before.
    AB Still learning

  • ObelixxObelixx Vendée, Western FrancePosts: 28,382
    Hang up some bird feeders.  Parent birds need juicy aphids to feed to their clutches.  Feed them all year - peanuts, fat balls, loose seed, fresh or dried meal worms and so on and they'll keep your garden clean of all sorts of undesirable aphids and caterpillars.

    If you see any adult ladybirds or their larvae relocate them to the tree.  I've never used nematodes or any introduced predators because I feed the birds and don't use pesticides so there's a balance.

    Don't use a chemical spray or diluted washing-up liquid as these are indiscriminate and kill the good guys too.

    "We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." - George Bernard Shaw
  • KLindsayKLindsay Posts: 2
    Thanks to both of you for coming back to me. Thanks Allotment Boy, it did cross my mind if the ladybirds would stay on the acer and not fly off somewhere else :| 
    Thanks Obelixx, I also feed the birds, peanuts, meal worms and seeds, every day and have done for a long time. I love birds and we have quite a few diff species that come, and yet the blackfly prob is still there. But, I have just this morning moved one of the feeders onto one of the Acer branches and so perhaps that will help. 
    Grateful for your input! :)
Sign In or Register to comment.