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What is eating my dahlia tips

The new growth on my dahlias is being attacked by something but I cannot find any obvious culprits. All of the top  leaves and shoot tips look nibbled and blasted mostly round the edges....also some small holes...but the holes and nibbled edges .... which have brownish edges.... are smaller than slug  damage. there are no encrustations of fact not even the slightest sign of them. The plants which are quite tall look healthy enough's just the tips which are affected and this of course is inhibiting flowering. I have one or two flowers only on each plant. Any suggestions??


  • Earwigs love to eat Dahlias, also caterpillars and slugs and snails. You might see the earwigs at night

  • ElusiveElusive Posts: 992

    Possibly Capsid Bugs also. they leave terrible distortions in the leaves that are brown around the edges.

    They wrecked the leaves on my Shasta Daisies!

  • Yes brown round the edges and distorted some leaves have been eaten down to the mid ribs ....but what do capsid s look like and wouldnt I have seen some by now....of whatever it is that's causing the problem. Matbeer mentioned your Shastas having been attacked but oddly only my Dahlias are being targeted...nothing else including Shastas seems to be affected. It really is most odd.

  • Thank you both for your replies... having just looked up capsid bug on google ...which had a photo of capsid damage I am now convinced that they are the culprit....and come to think of it my very tatty looking cardoons are probably another victim. Still haven't seen one it the adults that do the damage or the they fly away when disturbed I wonder ,which may account for lack of sightings.  So what to do about them? Is there an organic control I wonder, since I grow my cardoons mainly for the benefit of the bees!

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