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6 Pests That May Be In Your Holiday Tree

Every year, many of us will decorate an old-fashioned, real cut Christmas tree. Those trees not only make us feel in the holiday spirit, but they can also be visited by a few guests of their own. Uninvited, five-legged guests get into our holiday trees, making it look like it is hosting a party, or a hotel with a lot of guests. These 6 pests listed in this article may be living in your real holiday tree: spiders, mites, bark beetles, aphids, and sawflies. Let’s look at each one, where they come from and how you can identify them in your tree.

Spiders

What do they look like?

Spiders are usually found in the periphery of the tree. They are small, brown to black, and often, they have a pale yellowish stripe down their back. They can be both short and long legged, and they have 8 eyes.

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Where did they come from?

Spiders often come from outside, and they’re drawn in by the lights of the tree. Some other spiders live in the branches of the tree and use them as their home.

What kind of damage can they do?

Most spiders that find their way into the tree won’t do any damage to your decorations or the tree itself. However, some can leave behind an unsightly web or bite if provoked.

Mites

What do they look like?

Mites are small, reddish-brown, and they have 8 legs, but they are much smaller than other pests found in the tree, the size of a grain of pepper.

Where did they come from?

Mites usually get into the tree from the soil around the tree, as well as tree trunks.

What kind of damage can they do?

Mites can cause damage to your tree, such as small yellow or black spots on the leaves, or even the needles. If left unchecked, mites can cause significant damage over time.

Bark Beetles

What do they look like?

Beetles are black, about 2mm in size, and may look like small bugs. They also have antennae and 6 legs.

Where did they come from?

Beetles may have come from fallen tree trunks, stumps, and yard debris.

What kind of damage can they do?

Though the beetle itself won’t do any damage, the larvae left behind can cause structural damage to your tree but this is very rare.

Aphids

What do they look like?

Aphids are small, pear-shaped, and often have various colors, such as dark brown, olive green, and black.

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Where did they come from?

Aphids usually come from trees and plants near to the tree, and might even have been present on the tree itself when you bought it.

What kind of damage can they do?

Aphids may cause weak foliage and distorted or discolored leaves. They also excrete a sticky fluid, which can attract ants, bees, and other insects.

Sawflies

What do they look like?

Sawflies look like small, black and yellow wasps, with three sets of yellow and black stripes. They are approximately 6 mm in length and they have 6 legs.

Where did they come from?

Sawflies are often found outdoors, near to trees and plants.

What kind of damage can they do?

Sawflies can cause damage to your tree by eating the leaves, leading to defoliation. They may also spread diseases and parasites, depending on the species.

People Also Ask

How can I prevent pests from getting into my holiday tree?

A few precautions can be taken to prevent pests from entering holiday trees. Check the tree for signs of pests before bringing it in your home and keep your tree away from lights and windows. Additionally, keep it away from any large caches of water, as some pests need water to survive.

What if I find pests in my holiday tree?

If you find pests in your holiday tree, you should take it outside and inspect it thoroughly. It may be easier to clean pests out if the tree is outside. Additionally, you should use an insecticide to spray your holiday tree.

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Can I use chemical pesticides on my holiday tree?

It’s not recommended to use chemical pesticides on your holiday tree. Chemical pesticides can be dangerous to humans and animals. It’s also best to avoid using them in tandem with ornaments and Christmas lights.

Can pests damage my holiday tree?

In some cases, pests can cause damage to your tree. Depending on the species of the pests, damage can range from holes in leaves to structural damage. It’s best to inspect your holiday tree regularly to check for signs of damage from pests.

Are there nontoxic ways to get rid of pests from my holiday tree?

Yes, there are a few ways to get rid of pests from a holiday tree without using toxic chemicals. These include using an insecticidal soap, a keen eye to spot pests, and regular inspections of the tree. Spraying the tree with water can also help to eliminate some of the pests.

Final Words

We all want to have a perfect holiday season without any pest interruptions. But, sometimes, pests can make their way into our holiday tree. Knowing what pests to look for and how to identify them can help us to protect our holiday decorations and the tree. If you notice pests in your tree, it’s best to take care of the problem quickly. If you don’t catch them early, they can cause more damage. Fortunately, there are a variety of nontoxic ways to rid your holiday tree of pests.