What We’ve Learned about the Japanese Beetle


Home & Garden

Blog > Home & Garden > What We’ve Learned about the Japanese Beetle

What We’ve Learned about the Japanese Beetle

We've survived another summer of Japanese Beetle infestation. But why are there so many? What can we do for next year? We talk to Entomologist, Cliff Sandof to get some answers!

Photo Credit: Indiana Department of Natural Resources


Once again, the Japanese Beetles overtook many of our gardens this year. Where do they come from? Why does it seem impossible to get rid of them?


We talked to Purdue Extension entomologist, Cliff Sadof to find some answers. Even though there is a lot we just don’t know about this pest, Sadof generously fills us in on what professionals DO know. The beetles may start to die down, but hopefully with Cliff’s help we’ll be a little more prepared for next year. 


Listen to the interview below!


Interview recorded July 2019 with Denny Smith WIBC.


Things to take away:

  • DON’T use the traditional traps, this will actually attract MORE beetles.
  • Wait until the peak of the season (mid-June/July) and spray Sevin (or any killer) once a week. This won’t get rid of them all, but will significantly reduce the number.
  • If they attack your veggies you may be okay. You can loose up to 25% of foliage off of your veggie plant and still have produce. Be more cautious if you notice they are eating the actual vegetable.
  • Typically Japanese Beetles won’t return to the same spot the following year!
  • And finally, the reason most of you are reading, the best way to kill the grubs early on WITHOUT harming the bees, Acelepryn. You can find this spray in most stores, it’s great for targeting the beetles without threatening the bees.


Bonus Tips:

  • Don’t allow the beetles to congregate. A high concentration of beetles alerts the others!
  • Remove any heavily damaged leaves. If left, it’s easier for other beetles to find.
  • If you want an alternate method to getting rid of beetles besides spray you can use soapy water! Take a walk through your garden each morning/night with a bucket of warm water with industrial dish washing liquid from the kitchen and push the beetles in. Then take that water and the dead beetles and dump it in your compost. 


For more information on the Japanese Beetles click here. For more tips on garden pests make sure to check out Cliff here.

Home & Garden
Photo Credit: Getty Images. picture alliance. The temperatures are starting to drop and the days are getting...
Home & Garden
Happy Halloween from all of us at Home and Garden! If you are looking for a last minute costume that may be...