Worst Garden Pests In Cleveland

You might be excited about the arrival of spring. It means it’s time to get back out in the garden. It also means that the armies of pests are ready to wake up and destroy your garden. Knowing the signs and symptoms of garden pests can give you the advantage in fighting them. Here’s a list of some of the most common and most troublesome garden pests in Cleveland.

Colorado Potato BeetlesColorado Potato Beetles can destroy a plant in a short time if not treated in Canton OH

Once a blight in the west, these nasty bugs have migrated east, feeding on America’s potato crops. Colorado potato beetles are easily identified by their round, yellow shells with black lines running lengthwise along their backs.

Potato beetles overwinter under the dirt in your garden and emerge in the spring. The females lay their eggs on the leaves of crops, like potatoes. The first generation larvae feeds from 10 days to a month, temperatures permitting, before dropping to the ground to pupate into adults. The adults will feed, mate, and reproduce one more time before winter. Potato beetles can defoliate a plant in a short time so it’s important to check for signs of feeding and eggs on the underside of leaves. Despite their name, the potato beetle doesn’t just feed on potatoes. They also enjoy tomatoes, peppers, flowers, and fruit.

Cabbage LooperCabbage Loopers can cause significant damage to the plants in your garden in Akron, OH

Cabbage Loopers resemble inchworms and they can cause significant damage to your garden. The moths migrate north as temperatures rise in the spring and summer. They lay their eggs on host plants where they will hatch in under 2 weeks and begin to feed. After they have their fill, the larvae will pupate underneath leaves of plants or in the dirt for 1-2 weeks. Multiple generations can occur in a single year which can result in severe plant damage.

You’ll know you have cabbage loopers when you see ragged holes chewed in leaves. If enough damage is done it can stunt the plant and prevent it from producing.

Cabbage loopers feast on:

cabbage, cauliflower, broccoli, kale, and turnips.

Squash Vine Borer

The squash vine borer is the bane of gourds, pumpkins, and winter squash. You’ll notice the damage when you see long vines wilt and die. Inspect the plants and look for signs of the squash vine borer which will be in the form of frass or sawdust where the insect chewed its way into the plant. The caterpillars are 1 inch long and have brown heads with cream colored bodies. The adult moths are black or grey with red hind legs that resemble wasps but are harmless to humans.


Aphids are tiny, hard-to-see insects that are an infamous garden invader. They might not do much in small numbers but get enough of them together and they can cause some serious damage by piercing plants with their mouthparts and sucking the juices out.

Unlike other insects, Aphids give birth to live young and do not need to mate to do so. Females hatch in the spring in eggs and, as they grow, they give birth to the next generation of females. This continues through the summer until fall approaches. This is when the females decide to produce some males to mate with which will keep her and the successive generations fertile until next fall.

Aphids have an appetite for nearly all garden crops especially beans, peas, melons, cucumbers, tomatoes, and potatoes.

Get Pest Protection From Rankin

At Rankin Lawn Care we know pests. With our lawn care program and perimeter pest control program we can reduce and even eliminate a number of pests that affect your yard and prevent them from getting into your house such as spiders, ants, earwigs, and more.

Contact us at (330) 935-2900 or leave a message on our site.