Worms in strawberries

Asked June 21, 2013, 11:09 AM EDT

Hi! I have mushy spots on my strawberries, and when cut open I am finding a very very little while worm/ larvae. Can you please tell me what it is, how to treat, and if I treat, can I save the green strawberries, or are they infected early? I usually choose organic methods, but like having options. Thanks you so much!

Washington County Oregon

2 Responses

Thank you for your question to Ask the Expert.

The white larvae could be from Spotted Wing Drosophila, which cause damage as you describe to strawberries and a variety of other fruits. Here is more information:
http://extension.oregonstate.edu/gardening/node/1464
http://www.ipm.ucdavis.edu/PMG/PESTNOTES/pn74158.html

Do these descriptions match what you are seeing?

In terms of treatment, cleaning up fallen fruit and infected fruit is one option along with setting traps with apple cider vinegar described in the linked publications. Your best bet with organic pesticides is to use spinosad, which is available in most garden centers. It will need to be re-applied weekly during the rest of the fruiting season. Neam and pyrethrins are other organic pesticides available for this pest. Please make sure to follow the instructions on the label.

Please let me know if you have any further questions.

Weston


Thank you, yes. And I am thinking it may have carried over from a plum tree pest from the last few years. Thanks for your help!