Juniper: Cypress tip moth

categories: Conifers Juniper Juniper Insects Ornamentals

revision date: 2024-06-07 06:33

Juniper cypress tip moth damage.
Juniper cypress tip moth
Photo by: R.S. Byther


The adult cypress tip moth (cypress tip miner) is a silver-tan moth approximately 1⁄4″ in length. The larvae are green, about 1⁄8″ long, and tunnel in the leaves and growing shoot tips. Damage is typically limited to tips of twigs. In late winter, damaged leaves begin to turn brown. The larva exits the mined areas in late winter or early spring to make a cocoon. The exit holes are dark and may resemble symptoms of leaf blight, a fungal disease. The cocoon is a white, somewhat papery structure made in the dead or living foliage. The adult moths appear on plants around May-June. Heavy infestations can cause severe damage.

Management Options

Use Integrated Pest Management (IPM) for successful plant problem management.

Non-chemical Management

Select non-chemical management options as your first choice!

  • Use resistant plants. The following are reported to be least susceptible to damage:
    • Juniperus chinensis var. sargentii cv. ‘Glauca’
    • J. chinensis cv. ‘Kaizuka’
    • J. scopulorum cv. ‘Erecta Glauca’
    • Thuja plicata

Chemical Management

IMPORTANT: Visit Home and Garden Fact Sheets for more information on using pesticides.

  • Apply in late spring to early summer.
  • In western Washington, this is usually around late June.
  • 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.

Approved Pesticides

Listed below are examples of pesticides that are legal in Washington. Always read and follow all label directions.

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