This season truly is magical. It's time to load up the car and make the trip to the farm or seasonal lot, where you may pick out the perfect Christmas tree as a family. Before bringing it in, verify that you won't be inviting bugs into your home, along with your beacon of festive cheer.
You may have seen the movie "Christmas Vacation," and you may know how quickly a squirrel in a tree can ruin a perfectly excellent celebration, but have you ever had an insect invasion turn you from merry and bright to bah humbug?
Safer Brands claims that one Christmas tree can harbour up to 25,000 insects, many of which are not immediately visible to the naked eye. When the weather outside cools, tree bugs hibernate; they won't awaken again until they reach the warmth of your home.
Take a peek below to find out what pests to watch out for in your tree this holiday season and how to keep them from spoiling your celebrations.
Small insects like this thrive on the sap of conifers like firs and pines. If your Christmas tree has a snowy coating, it's not a Christmas miracle; it's an infestation. Before you can say "timber!" these scumbags will have chopped down your tree.
One of the most widespread pests that attack Christmas trees is the aphid. These insects resemble ticks but have only six legs rather than eight. They're always in the holiday spirit, with colors like black, brown, red, and green! Commonly seen in the lowest levels of the tree.
Dark brown or black in color, bark beetles live in burrows in the wood of pine, fir, juniper, cypress, ponderosa, and juniper trees.
Mites do a great job of eating other insects’ eggs in your tree, but they’ll also cling to and destroy your ornaments, leaving little red stains all over them. Mites do a great job of eating other insects’ eggs in your tree, but they’ll also cling to and destroy your ornaments, leaving little red stains all over them.
Spiders seek out Christmas trees because they are a good source of other insects that may be used as food. It's possible that your tree will become afflicted due to this. Problems at home are likely if a spider has laid eggs in a tree in your yard.
The good news is that tree bugs don't have a strong grip, so a good shake should be enough to dislodge unwanted guests. Even though most Christmas tree lots now use mechanical shakers to do the heavy lifting, giving your tree a little shake before bringing it inside is still a good idea.
Shining a flashlight into the tree is a quick and easy technique to check for intruders. Remember to look for spider webs, egg clumps, and bird nests.
Before bringing your tree inside, give it a dusting of Diatomaceous Earth, an insecticide, and let it sit for 24 hours to kill any remaining bugs and their eggs.
The combination of Christmas tree lights and combustible insect sprays is a surefire way to destroy your home and festive spirit.
The steps above should be enough to prevent insects from entering your Christmas tree this year. However, as any plant parent knows, bringing a piece of nature inside always means bringing in a bug or two. A vacuum cleaner should be on hand in case any aphids or spiders fall with the pine needles.
Having your home winterized and scheduled for a winter pest control treatment is one of the best methods to keep unwanted guests out of your home this holiday season. Please contact us to set up your next scheduled visit.