WSU Extension


Boron deficiency 
Green algae 
Phytophthora leaf & twig blight 
Red leaf spotting 
Brown soft scale 
Cottony camellia scale 
Holly bud moth 
Holly leafminer 
Lecanium scale 
Orange tortrix 

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Caption: Holly bud moth larvae damage
Photo by: Unknown
Holly : Holly bud moth
(revision date: 3/10/2017)

The adult holly bud moth is a mottled brown and black insect with a wingspan of approximately 1/2". Overwintering eggs hatch in the spring. The larvae begin feeding on buds but soon move to leaves, which they roll and hold in place with webbing. The larvae are greenish-brown with dark heads and about 1/2" long. Another name for the holly bud moth is the blackheaded fireworm. It also feeds on cranberry, blueberry, apple and cherry.
Management Options

Non-Chemical Management
  • Pinch or hand-pick and destroy rolled leaves to kill larvae.
Select non-chemical management options as your first choice!

Chemical Management

Apply when new growth is about 1/4 inch in length and before blossoms open. Sevin (carbaryl) is particularly dangerous to honeybees since it does not immediately kill them. They return to the hive with the poison and distribute it within. Therefore avoid carbaryl if there is any possibility of pesticide drifting onto nearby blooming plants. Homeowners should not make foliar applications to trees over 10 ft tall. Consult a commercial pesticide applicator for treatment of trees and shrubs over 10 ft. tall.

Listed below are examples of pesticides that are legal in Washington. Always read and follow all label directions.
  • GardenTech Sevin Conc Bug Killer
    Active ingredient: carbaryl  |  EPA reg no: 264-334-71004
  • This list may not include all products registered for this use.

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Caption: Holly bud moth larvae damage
Photo by: Unknown