Japanese beetle magnet

Another lovely plant that I won’t be adding to my garden — Hollyhocks.  They seem to be as much of a Japanese beetle magnet as my roses and raspberries.

japanese beetle on hollyhock

It starts like this..one or two beetles on lovely just opened Hollyhock flowers

japanese beetles on hollyhock

And once the “odeur de scarabee Japonais” (pardon my French — or lack thereof) has been released into the air, a mating orgy begins.

A sex pheromone is released by females and sensed by a receptor in the male’s antennae to lure them in.  But other females can also sense this chemical in the air and are drawn into its source, with the expectation that males will also be there.  And so, a mating orgy ensues.

japanese beetles on hollyhock

Skeletonized leaves and munched flowers leave little of the hollyhock beauty to admire.

A Cedar Waxwing jumped down to one plant to inspect the beetle congregation but left without taking one.

A Cedar Waxwing jumped down to one plant to inspect the beetle congregation but left without taking one.

Each year the Japanese beetle population gets a little larger and infests a greater variety of plants.  What's a gardener to do?

Each year the Japanese beetle population gets a little larger and infests a greater variety of plants. What’s a gardener to do?

9 thoughts on “Japanese beetle magnet

    • Funny! I think the beetles fly from Florida to eat my raspberries, but there are a lot fewer of them this year than last. Perhaps the cold winter really did kill some of the larvae, but that just means those that survived are the cold hardy ones, and that doesn’t make me feel any better.

    • I agree. I think the key is to time the flowering of your favorite plants to occur before the beetles arrive or when the beetles are gone.

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