WSU Extension

Hortsense

Plum, Prune (Fresh)
 
Disease
Armillaria root rot 
Bacterial canker 
Black knot 
Brown rot 
Crown gall 
Cytospora canker 
Plum pockets 
Russeting 
Shothole (Coryneum blight) 
Silver leaf 
Virus diseases 
Insect
Aphids 
Apple-and-thorn skeletonizer 
Brown marmorated stink bug 
Earwigs 
Fruittree leafroller 
Leafhoppers 
Pacific flatheaded borer 
Peach twig borer 
Peachtree borer 
Pear slug 
Scale insects 
Shothole borer 
Spider mites 
Spotted wing Drosophila (SWD) 



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Caption: Apple-and-thorn skeletonizer
Photo by: A.L. Antonelli
  
Plum, Prune (Fresh) : Apple-and-thorn skeletonizer
(revision date: 5/7/2015)


Biology
The adult of the apple-and-thorn skeletonizer is a small dark-brown or reddish-brown moth. It overwinters as a pupa or an adult, with the females laying eggs in the spring. The caterpillars are yellow-green in color, have black spots and brown heads, and feed on the leaves of several plants including apple, crabapple, pear, cherry, and hawthorn. Caterpillars are about 1/2" long at maturity. Characteristic damage includes skeletonized leaves, or leaves that are rolled into a cone and tied with webbing. Damaged leaves are brown and papery and drop prematurely.
Management Options


Non-Chemical Management
  • Hand-pick and destroy caterpillars when practical.
  • Pinch caterpillars inside rolled leaves or prune and destroy heavily infested twigs.
  • Naturally-occurring enemies help control populations of apple-and-thorn skeletonizers. Avoid use of broad-spectrum insecticides which kill beneficial insects.
Select non-chemical management options as your first choice!

Chemical Management

Apply spinosad when caterpillars are first seen and are numerous enough to be annoying. 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.
  • Bull's-Eye Bioinsecticide
    Active ingredient: spinosad (spinosyn A+D)  |  EPA reg no: 62719-314-56872
  • ferti-lome Borer, Bagworm, Tent Caterpillar & Leafminer Spray
    Active ingredient: spinosad (spinosyn A+D)  |  EPA reg no: 62719-314-7401
  • Monterey Garden Insect Spray [Organic]
    Active ingredient: spinosad (spinosyn A+D)  |  EPA reg no: 62719-314-54705
  • This list may not include all products registered for this use.
Images

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Caption: Apple-and-thorn skeletonizer
Photo by: A.L. Antonelli