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Dahlias: Dumb question about beetles...

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Forum: DahliasReplies: 8, Views: 71
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queequeg_1
Pinellas Park, FL
(Zone 10a)

June 11, 2010
6:00 PM

Post #7880005

I have these little beetles that get into the blooms, once opened, deep amidst the petals and...well...make the blooms ugly. They don't quite chew on the petals (as best I can tell-nothing obvious), but they nestle in there, making the blooms a little malformed and darken the area where they're snuggled-whether with their poop,or...? I'm 99% sure they aren't in there as the bloom is forming, because I have been checking as it opens, to see if I can find them ahead of time and knock them off. They don't move much-seem to say in the same spot.
They don't match the description of Japanese beetles-no leaf damage and they don't look the same. I've looked on bug files here and googled them and I can't find a match. Of course, it would be nice if I had a photo, wouldn't it? I wasn't smart enough to get one, so will get one and post here ASAP. Briefly, it is maybe 1/4" big, very dark bownish-black, not irridescent at all. No other distinguishing marks. Any help is appreciated.
pirl
(Arlene) Southold, NY
(Zone 7a)

June 12, 2010
10:56 AM

Post #7881900

Could you cut off a flower head that has the bugs in it and put it in a sealed plastic bag and then bring it to a reliable nursery for identification?
queequeg_1
Pinellas Park, FL
(Zone 10a)

June 12, 2010
2:36 PM

Post #7882416

Well, now that's a good idea. After I posted, I went through the bug files some more. There are so many files listed under beetle, so I probably got 2/3 way through them and still didn't find it. I'm gonna go out and look for one now...
queequeg_1
Pinellas Park, FL
(Zone 10a)

June 12, 2010
2:50 PM

Post #7882466

So, no beetle, but the tell tale signs one has maybe been there.
Not chewed up so much as made the bloom icky.

Thumbnail by queequeg_1
Click the image for an enlarged view.

pirl
(Arlene) Southold, NY
(Zone 7a)

June 12, 2010
4:16 PM

Post #7882712

Your local county extension agent might know the culprit so give them a try if your local nursery can't identify the problem.
queequeg_1
Pinellas Park, FL
(Zone 10a)

June 14, 2010
5:07 PM

Post #7888856

I will very much do this, as soon as I get a day off (not sure when that will be).
Here is a picture of the bug. I lied-it's actually 1/2".

Thumbnail by queequeg_1
Click the image for an enlarged view.

sannajane
Eureka, CA

June 17, 2010
8:31 AM

Post #7896647

Ugh!! Out here I am plagued sometimes with Cucumber Beetles... but that's not one of them. Good luck~!
queequeg_1
Pinellas Park, FL
(Zone 10a)

June 17, 2010
8:42 AM

Post #7896684

Cucmber beetles are cute but a menace. Why can't they just leave our dahlias alone?
Thanks to melody over at the Bug ID forum, she found it was Euphoria sepulcralis or Dark Flower Scarab. They eat nectar/pollen. So THAT'S what that pest was doing in there.
pirl
(Arlene) Southold, NY
(Zone 7a)

June 17, 2010
9:01 AM

Post #7896742

So glad you found the name of the offender!

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