Rosemary beetle damage

Thanks to Clare Pooley, I was able to identify a spectacular-looking beetle which I saw on some lemon balm in the back garden last week. It is a rosemary beetle (Chrysolina americana) and it is a shame that it could potentially cause much damage to herbs in my garden. However, according to the RHS website, which can be found here, birds might control an infestation. Let’s hope so!

Unfortunately, one of my colleagues has not been so lucky. I was invited round for a look at her garden over the last week and she showed me what the beetle has been doing to her lavender and such.

At least the beetles don’t eat everything. It was lovely to see my colleague (not on camera for the first time in 15 months) and her garden; and I came with cuttings to grace the front garden. Not the forlorn herbs but some hardy geraniums. She dug up some roots which were immediately replanted once I arrived home, so I hope they take root and provide as much splendour here as at my colleague’s.

About Helen

I have always been interesting in living a more environmentally friendly lifestyle and used to do what I could. Now, I have come to realise that we have reached such a point in terms of environmental degradation that it is more important - perhaps - to focus on building resilience. I therefore do as much as I can to reuse, grow my own and encourage a supportive community, for example. I also keep reading and learning all the time.
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17 Responses to Rosemary beetle damage

  1. Clare Pooley says:

    Your poor friend’s plants! I have been contemplating stopping growing herbs and lavender because of these beetles though picking the adults off as I see them has made a little difference.. I have had to stop growing lilies because of the lily beetle.

  2. GEEZ! The Japanese Beetles are back at it here, but nothing like they were in 2019. They love the rose blossoms…

  3. Our worst problem is vine weevils. I hope your birds can deal with these beetles

  4. Going Batty in Wales says:

    I haven’t (as far as I know!) got rosemary beetle. My worst enemies are slugs but I know from experience that the solution is patience. An infestation of a pest means The birds (or other insect) which feeds on them is able to raise a lot of young and next year the problem is less. Sometimes, of course, the weather or some other factor disrupts the balance but generally if we provide lots of habitats and polycultures the balance will be restored.

    • Helen says:

      I hope this will be true for my colleague – fortunately, I’ve only seen the one here, which I hope the birds have already snaffled.

  5. We had lily beetles – didn’t know there was a rosemary beetle. We controlled the lily beetles with manual searches for adults. We have had quite a few ladybirds and woolly bears in the last few weeks, a sign of a scruffy garden, but also a useful natural predator.

I love to read about your own experiences and any other feedback you have, so look forward to your comments below.

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