I live in the Reno area of Washington County and my soil is very sandy. I...

Asked May 1, 2020, 1:16 PM EDT

I live in the Reno area of Washington County and my soil is very sandy. I have several tulip Poplars, that have been treated by injection through Spring-Green Lawn Care and Pest Control (I believe they inject a root feed AND merit insecticide). This has been done for ,at least five years, to help eliminate whatever causes the Poplar leaves to have many 'holes in them. Unfortunately it hasn't seemed to work at all. This year the leaves are just coming out and they have 'holes' in them. What, if anything, should I do for my Poplars? They are old trees, trimmed many times, and are over 100 feet tall with a diameter of nearly 3 feet.

Washington County Ohio

1 Response

A major pest in our area is the Yellow Poplar Weevil; which we saw a major outbreak in 2015. Without seeing the leaves firsthand or inspecting the trees or leaves for this pest, this is only a speculation based off prevalent pests of poplar trees in Washington. Adults overwinter in leaf litter under the host trees, so an insecticide injected into the soil will not control yellow poplar weevil. The first step in controlling pests, is to identify the particular pest which is causing problems; not just applying insecticide with hope of controlling all pests. The yellow poplar weevil adults chew distinctive holes in the leaves that resemble curved rice grains in size and shape. The larval stage, a white legless grub, develops and feeds inside the leaves of poplar.

Here are two good factsheets to help you to determine if yellow poplar weevil is the pest you are experiencing.
https://entomology.ca.uky.edu/ef414
https://bygl.osu.edu/node/1103

Also, if you can take pictures of the leaves, please email them to me so I can see and get a feel to what is happening.
mccartney.138@osu.edu

I hope this helps and stay safe