Citrus Gall Wasp
One of the most common problems in backyards at the moment citrus gall Wasp! What is citrus gall wasp you may be asking? Well if you have noticed what looks like galls or calluses forming on the branches of your citrus trees then the gall wasp has infected you tree.
This has become an epidemic in Melbourne over the past 15years and has caused quite a problem.
This problem happens when the tiny female wasp, lays her eggs in the branch of twig of the tree around September and it starts to swell.
In summer or autumn it increases in size and becomes a large deformity on the branch. Eventually the wasp will escape from these Galls via tiny little holes and re infect the tree.
The damage the gall does to the tree can make the tree unproductive not forming fruit, and with repeated attacks can weaken the tree and make it look quite ugly and will kill the tree in the long term.
What do you do about it? As soon as you see the lumps, just cut them off and keep removing them. That’s all you can do. If the tree looks like it’s really suffering and the branches are brittle with little or no fruit, then it might be best to cut it back hard.
You may need an expert like us, to come and address your Gall Wasp problem.
Below are some tips on controlling citrus gall wasp. Controlling gall wasp can be difficult, however the damage can be minimised if you try and follow some simple steps:
Mid-August is prime time for gall wasp, so you can use gall wasp traps to assist in stopping these critters for attacking your plants. The sticky traps can be hung inside any infected trees, however make sure to remove the sticky traps before November as you don’t want to accidentally trap the beneficial insects and even small birds.
Avoiding fertilisers that are high in nitrogen as these properties promotes soft sappy grown, which the gall wasp loves. Feed these tress in late autumn and early winter instead.
It is very important when disposing of the infected galls wasp stems that you do not dispose of them in your standard garden waste bin. Always make sure to double bag and put in your regular rubbish bin.
It is also helpful that after removing all the infected branches to fertilise the tree to encourage new growth, and hopefully some fruit for your citrus tree.