Japanese maples (also known as Yucca) are special and beautiful trees, which are native to Japan (obviously).
As beautiful and colorfully-scented as these trees are, do they attract bugs? As with most things in life, there is a reason why the question is asked. Here’s what I know about this plant and the insects that plague it:
Japanese beetles attack the trees. These are common leaf feeders that feed on the colorful leaves of Japanese maples and if they’re ignored, these insects can attack the stems as well — and destroy the plant in weeks. Other noticeable insects and pests of this plant include mealybug, scale, and mites. Although these insects do attack matured trees, they mostly feed on the young trees.
For some, it is because they want to know how to protect their own property from “tree-huggers”. For others, it is because they are wondering how to get rid of the insects that are attacking their trees.
For yet another, it is because they want to know how to identify the specific insects that they are dealing with, to be able to protect their home or business from their destructive behavior.
As with most other natural resources, the only way that we can be sure of killing off these pests is to prevent them from being able to reproduce. It’s for this reason that it is so important to understand the relationship between insect and tree — to be able to eliminate them from your yard.
And, as I’m sure you already know, understanding the relationship between a tree and an insect can only come through experience.
One of the most common ways that insects attack Japanese Maple trees is by using a “trash pole”. This is a long metal rod that is used to take away any excess branches or twigs that might be growing on your tree.
There are two main types of trashes: Those that are built at the base of the tree and those that are built parallel to the trunk of the tree. Both are effective and should be used in combination with other methods of prevention.
Do Japanese Maple Trees Attract Bugs?
Japanese maples are a kind of maple tree that grows really closely – up to 40 feet tall. Some people call them English maples, because they’re called that in the United States.
And while they were originally planted in the country, they’ve now become a popular ornamental plant for landscaping in other countries, as well as here in the US. But what are the reasons why do Japanese maples trees attract bugs? In fact, there are several reasons, and they range from cultural aspects to economic ones.
#1. Japanese Maple Attracts Flying Ladybugs
One of the reasons why Japanese maples are sometimes referred to as “lady’s box” or “bay trees” is because of their tendency to attract a special kind of insect. It’s called white flying ladybugs.
These bugs tend to be much smaller than typical flying insects, but can have a very annoying habit of hovering around your trees and feeding on the leaves of your trees.
They usually live in houses and attics, feeding on the leaves of plants and sucking plant juices to sustain themselves. And you probably know what happens when you leave them alone. They quickly multiply and spread out into the surrounding areas, causing more problems for you.
#2. Leaf-eating Bugs Feed on Japanese Maple Leaves
On the flip side, there are also insects that feed off of the leaves and needles of this tree. These include leaf-eating bugs, which can be very serious problems if you have a lot of these insects around.
These bugs don’t just eat the leaf itself; they also suck the juices from the base of the leaf as well, making them quite an unsavory addition to your garden. If you want to keep leaf-eating bugs away, you need to control the population of your maples.
A major reason why Japanese maples attract bugs is that they’re known to shed their leaves in different seasons.
This is referred to as “hiding” their leaves until the perfect time to regrow them comes around. Most of us have a pretty easy time keeping our trees healthy and without bugs, but with the Japanese, it’s not always so easy. They tend to shed their leaves in bunches.
This produces what’s called “honey bees” or “fruit flies”. These flying insects are much like winged insects, only they have wings and use their wings to fly.
Does all of this sound a bit complicated? It isn’t, but the more you understand about how trees attract bugs, the better equipped you will be to deal with the problem.
Of course, the real question you should ask yourself is – why do Japanese maples, in the first place, attract bugs? Maybe you need to look at how your house is built. If the roof is improperly installed, for example, the leaves that fall from the trees won’t stay on the trees.
Or maybe the soil itself is polluted. If this is the case, there’s no such thing as a “leaf eater” in the world. But, instead of eating the leaves, they simply fall off.
So, although you might expect to find leaf-eating bugs in a Japanese maples tree, this isn’t the case, and it’s just good practice to think about this kind of thing before you start growing your Japanese maples in your backyard.
What Causes Holes in Japanese Maple Leaves?
What causes holes in Japanese maple trees is a simple question. You’ll often notice that the leaves are hollowed out of their typical cedar-like outer covering.
This is because they are not fully developed, and this type of tree is typically “just getting started” (unlike, say, elms, where the tree has been growing for years). Japanese maple is a beautiful type of maple, though, and I have often found them at auctions and estate sales in my area.
Sometimes, they are even more beautiful than, say, birch trees.
#1. Crowned Leaves Causes Holes
What causes holes in Japanese maples can be more complicated. One common cause of holes in Japanese maples is when the leaves have been “crowned”.
This basically means that some of the bark on the tree has been removed, along with some of the sapwood. Crowning usually happens during some period of growth, when the tree is young and just starting to produce new growth.
During this time, it is also common for the leaves to change color, from golden brown to a lovely pale pink.
This is called “hibiscus blooming” — the leaves will turn from a deep shade of pink to a vibrant orange or red color as they start to produce new sapwood. This is a very common event. The leaves will open slightly, then close back up.
#2. It’s Common With Younger Trees
Holes in the leaves of JM plants is more common with younger trees — since they are not yet capable of producing their own sugars and so must get them from somewhere.
These “sources” can sometimes be hidden under more foliage. If the tree’s growth is stunted for some reason, the amount of sugar it gets may be reduced, or it may not get all of the sugar it needs at all.
If a hole develops in a mature tree, it can be caused by two things. One is a small cavity or crack that has developed on the surface of the leaves.
#3. Tree Decaying
This can cause the leaf to bulge out, and then the whole thing can break off. Another cause is the “decaying” of the tree – which can also result in small holes.
There are many other possible causes of what causes holes in Japanese maple trees, but they all have one thing in common.
When this happens, the tree will eventually stop producing new leaves and die off. If you want to ensure your trees do not die of old age, you must take care of this problem from the root.
How to Get Rid of Bugs in Japanese Maple
Learning how to get rid of bugs in Japanese Maple tree can be fun if you are familiar with the species. This is one of the most popular trees in Japan and they are mainly used for making houses.
When you visit Japan, you will find a lot of homes made of this beautiful tree. If you are planning to build a house, this is one of the best trees to use. It gives your house a unique look that no other trees can provide.
The Japanese Maple tree is perfect to use for making furniture because of its resistance to some destructive bugs.
You do not need to spend much time or money in getting rid of these bugs. If you live in an area where there are a lot of bugs, you should consider using this tree. Most of the bugs will just hide inside the bark of the tree. You can easily discover them by cutting the branches of the tree regularly.
Apply Organic Pesticides
Another good tip on how to get rid of bugs in Japanese Maple tree is to protect it from bugs by applying organic pesticides.
You can apply it by spray it on the tree or you can also use it by cloth. This organic spray does not harm the maple leafs and they are safe for your pets and children. You do not need to worry about the damage it may do to the tree. The only thing that is damaged is the bark of the tree.
Cut Off The Bug’s Shelter
The best way to prevent bugs from attacking your tree is to cut off their shelter. You can do it by removing the protective covering of the leaves of the tree.
The bugs will move towards the exposed part of the leaves and will start living there. You can even use insecticidal soap to kill those pests that live in the nooks and crannies of the leaves.
Make sure that you clean the insecticidal soap from your clothes and then place them in a sealed container.
Some people have been trying eliminate bugs from Japanese Maple trees by using vinegar. Vinegar has been found to contain oxalic acid that is effective against bugs.
However, it is best not to use this method as they could lead to discoloration and brown spots. This acid can also cause thinning of the sapwood. So, try to use another method to get rid of those bugs.
As you can see, eliminating bugs from Japanese maple trees isn’t as difficult as you might think. There are ways to protect your tree so that they won’t be attacked. Above all, never allow fire outbreak close to your trees, as this can do more harm than bugs.