I have a pest problem with my cane plant that I'm sure one of you master...

Asked February 11, 2015, 5:55 PM EST

I have a pest problem with my cane plant that I'm sure one of you master gardeners can help me with. While sitting in my living room the other day, I noticed something that appeared to be "snaking" down the trunk of my cane plane, similar to a vine coming down a tree. When I touched it, it flaked like sawdust debris. As a result, I think I may have a boring insect of some type but am not sure what to do. An article on the web recommended to "squirt a few drops of methylated spirits or kerosene into the borer tunnels and putty up the holes to prevent water entering". Not sure what this means or whether that's what you do for indoor plants. Got any suggestions? The plant is probably about 75 years old. Thanks for your help.

Anne Arundel County Maryland houseplants borer

1 Response

This does look like borer damage. Once there is a borer inside the best thing to do is to cut it off below the hole. Cut out all damaged material. Cane plants generally grow back. Squirting chemicals in the hole is not going to fix the problem. vw