Forum home Plants

Amateur gardener. Help me ID the pests?

tasha.w75tasha.w75 Posts: 12
Hi there.

I'm a newbie, currently trying to learn as much as I can about gardening.

After living in sky scrappers and big cities for most of my life, I'm now in rural Scotland and have a garden!

I've done nothing with it for 18 months so I can see what's there and learn, but my immediate worry is that my roses,  Rhododendron and unidentified hedge seem to be suffering from the same pest!

Can you please help me identify the problem please?


  • PalustrisPalustris Posts: 4,214
    the hedge looks like Viburnum with a bad case of Viburnum beetle. Not sure about the Rhododendron, but it is not the same pest as on the Viburnum.
  • HelixHelix Posts: 631
    Lots of insects make holes in leaves, so until you catch them in the act it can be hard to work out which one is responsible.  And even insects that chomp through your leaves may spend the rest of the time doing something worthwhile, and most insecticides are non specific so don't select out bad insects and leave the good ones.  So do be cautious about blanket killing everything.  

    The approach I take is to feed my plants well, so they can afford to lose a few leaves.  And then if there is a bit that is really infested with something I will zap it with soap. 
  • BijdezeeBijdezee Posts: 1,484
    The rhodedendron looks like it has chlorosis. Usually this is caused by pH being too alkaline. Google chlorosis in rhodedendron and you can see what the problem is and how to solve it. Probably with an application of sequestered iron
  • SandygardenSandygarden Posts: 119
    The notches out of the sides of the Rhodo leaves are vine weavil. I ignore them, but mulch with Ericaceous compost (not too deep) to overcome the chlorides and make the leaves dark green and healthy 
  • tasha.w75tasha.w75 Posts: 12
    Wow so much knowledge and kindness, thanks everyone!

    Thanks, Palustris. I just did some research and you're right on both accounts.

    That's an excellent point, Helix. I had even considered installing a couple of bug hotels as I intend to garden and grow vegetables organically, but these pests rocked my confidence when it comes to inviting more mini-beasties in! What kind of soap do you use?

    Bijdezee and Sandy, I just googled extensively and I think you're right. Off to fix it this morning!

  • Joy*Joy* Posts: 571
    I add about half a teaspoonful of washing up liquid to two litres of water - not the other way round as the bottle fills up with froth! I have a cheap pump sprayer from Tesco which forces the aphids off. You can hold the shoots and give them a good soaking. It doesn't matter about it getting on your skin. I avoid spraying if there are ladybirds about. So far I've kept my new planted garden clean as I spray little and often. 
  • tasha.w75tasha.w75 Posts: 12
    Fantastic. Thanks, Joy!
    I'll try my castile Dr. Bronners soap.
  • HelixHelix Posts: 631
    Use the purest soap you can find. So dr Bronners is probably good. I use savon noir, savon de marseille.

    wilko’s do sachets of sequestered iron for £1.
  • tasha.w75tasha.w75 Posts: 12
    Thanks, Helix. 

    I do have savon de marseille, so will try that.
    Turns out my roses have black spot, so will try some bicarb solution for them.

    We bought ONE plant for the balcony of our 36th floor Sydney flat and I tended to it lovingly for five years... it was a chestnut tree and got so big that we needed movers to re-home it when we moved back to the UK! Safe to say, I have a lot to learn.
Sign In or Register to comment.