Red Bud Leaffolders
I live in Plymouth, MI, and I have two mature Cercis canadensis "Lavender Twist" redbuds that are infested with leaffolder caterpillars. I cannot find much on the internet about them. The one article I saw said to leave them alone unless the tree is young, but I am afraid of them getting even worse next year and/or killing my trees. I have never seen these before. The internet does not even show them to be in Michigan! What should I do?
Wayne County Michigan
You are in luck friend due to a blend of circumstance. Number 1: They are not primarily Redbud leaffolders but appear to like grape leaves better. (Who knows they might be more tender). Number 2: They are easy to do away with without endangering the plants under attack. Known primarily a Desmian funeralis or Grape Leaf-folder. The grape leaves they like are Muscadine And Bunch Grapes. There isn’t apparently enough Muscadines and Group grapes available so they work on the Cercis species here in the Midwest (canadensis and chiniensis) also. A little homework reading for you can be found at http://entnem.dept.ufc.edu/creature/fruit/grape-leaffolder.htm Control sprays with Carbaryl as one of the ingredients will control the critters for you. However So Not Eat the grapes for a week after spraying and even wash them well too. One other part of the controll is to make sure that your leaf fall from both the Redbud and the Grapes are well cleaned off the ground before snow fall