Texas Tree Care Alert: From the Desk of our Horticulture Manager
My warrior friends, please observe what I was lucky enough to film in the field. Pictured is a Black Flathead Wood-Boring Beetle, spotted in Bryan, Texas! Wood-boring beetles invade Texas trees when they are under stress due to drought or freeze damage. In our case here in Texas, our trees have experienced both conditions over the last few years, leaving them extremely vulnerable.
“Most insect borers are attracted to weakened, damaged, dying or dead plants. These are referred to as secondary invaders because they attack only after a plant has been weakened by another stress.”
Wood-Boring Insect Damage on Texas Trees
The tree bark weakens, and these guys take the opportunity to let themselves in through the front door! The beetles burrow in for mating and females begin laying eggs. The eggs hatch into larvae called Flatheaded Borers, and they eat their way out of the tree destroying the xylem (the blood veins) of the tree. This interrupts the flow of sap, water, and nutrients from the root systems into the tree causing the tree to die. This is why tree and shrub care in Texas is so important. A healthy tree is never a welcome place for these kinds of damaging insects. We inject the trees at the root with an insecticide to rid your trees and shrubs of damaging insects like wood-boring beetles!
(Men’s size 13 ring is shown for reference)