Eastern Tent Catepillar
Trees at Risk
Common hosts of the Eastern tent caterpillar include Prunus species such as cherry, plum, and peach, as well as flowering crabapple (Malus), hawthorn (Craetagus), and pear (Pyrus). Other hosts include maple (Acer), ash (Fraxinus), birch (Betula), oak (Quercus), willow (Salix), and poplar (Populus).
Feeding from Eastern tent caterpillar larvae in late spring and early summer can completely defoliate foliage from trees. Healthy trees can tolerate a single defoliation event, however, multiple defoliation events can cause dieback and when combined with abiotic stress events. The Eastern tent caterpillar is easy to control if treatment applications are timed correctly in the spring of the year.
Other Treatment Practices
- Prune out the nests after they have formed. Early morning or late afternoon is a good time to do this as most of the caterpillars will be in the nest.
- Promote health and vigor with proper irrigation, mulching, proper pruning and prescription based fertilization practices.
- Use Lepitect Infusible on trees that cannot be sprayed or treated with soil applications