Box Tree Caterpillar Killer - Steinernema carpocapsae

Number of Applications

Box Tree Caterpillars have rapidly become a serious pest of Box plants and Box hedges  in many parts of the UK. The Box Tree caterpillars can develop in large numbers and in severe cases completely kill box plants.  The caterpillars will defoliate plants and leave skeleton like leaves with webbing being created when they reach high numbers, they will even bore into the bark of more mature Box plants. Box tree caterpillars are quite distinctive with black stripes and white dots on a green caterpillar. The first step in protecting your plants is to place out Box Tree Caterpillar moth traps to catch and monitor the male moths, once these are observed , it is likely that the Box tree caterpillars will follow a few weeks later.   Nematodes can be used as a biological control against caterpillars. The most effective species of nematode for caterpillar control is ; Steinernema carpocapsae, which is contained in Box Tree Caterpillar Killer.

  • Apply as soon as soon as small caterpillars are observed
  • Box Tree Caterpillar Killer should ideally be applied in the evenings to minimise the influence of UV light and to maximise moisture availability for the nematodes
  • Spray the plants from bottom to top, making sure the middle of the plant also gets wet, apply plenty of solution onto the foilage and directly onto caterpillars where possible, at least 250-500 mil of nematode solution per square metre
  • Apply a second application 7 days after the first one, this is to catch any caterpillars not hit during the first application and any new small caterpillars hatched from fresh egg laying.
  • Box Tree Caterpillar nematodes should be applied with  sprayers, including Knapsack or hand held sprayers , removing any filters in them .

Box Tree Moth Caterpillar contains 2 sachet of 25 million nematodes, each 25 million pack treats up to 35 square metres. Opened sachets should be used in one application. Un-opened sachets should be fridge stored.

Box Tree plants can be aided to recover from Box Tree Moth attack with the application of Soil Boost granules. Soil Boost acts like an organic slow release fertiliser helping the Box put on new growth after plant stress and damage.

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