Did You Know: Lily Leaf Beetle

A Sustainable and Viable Non-Pesticide Alternative

Donna Ellis
Extension Educator Donna Ellis releasing biological controls.

Release and monitoring of two distinct biological control agents (the parasitoid wasps Tetrastichus setifer and Diaparsis jucunda) for biological control of lily leaf beetle began in Connecticut in 2012 under the direction of Extension Educator Donna Ellis. These beneficial insects have also been released in Massachusetts, Maine, New Hampshire, and Rhode Island.

In 2014, there were 15 new research sites. Five were release sites and eight served as control sites. A total of 1,257 wasps were released during an eight-day period in June in the towns of Haddam, Portland, Branford, New Haven and Middletown. In the three years of the project, control and release groups have been located in all eight counties.

2015 included additional release sites and continued sampling. Middlesex County Master Gardener Coordinator Gail Reynolds developed a presentation on the Lily Leaf Beetle research that has been given to an advanced Master Gardener class, a local garden club and others. A fact sheet, an infographic on lily leaf beetles, and other educational materials are available at www.ipm.uconn.edu