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Urban Water-Quality Management: Insect Pests of Water Garden Plants


426-040 (HORT-124P)

Authors as Published

Laurie Fox, Horticulture Associate, Hampton Roads AREC
Sherry Kern, Graduate Student, Hampton Roads AREC
John Davidson, Professor Emeritus, Department of Entomology, University of Maryland
Reviewed by David Close, Consumer Horticulture and Master Gardener Specialist, Horticulture, Virginia Tech
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This publication is available as a PDF file format only.

Aphids are often called plant lice. Several species are troublesome pests on above-water leaves (a), stems, and flower buds of aquatic plants. These sucking insects distort succulent new leaves, causing them to curl, wilt, or turn yellow. Adults are 1/8 inch long and can be winged (c) or wingless (b) with soft pear-shaped bodies with two distinctive cornicles or “tailpipes” protruding from the backs of their abdomens. Aphids excrete honeydew, which attracts ants and promotes sooty mold that eventually blackens leaves. The dark green to brown waterlily aphids overwinter as black eggs (d) on nearby plum or cherry trees. Aphids are active in late spring and throughout the summer.


Virginia Cooperative Extension materials are available for public use, reprint, or citation without further permission, provided the use includes credit to the author and to Virginia Cooperative Extension, Virginia Tech, and Virginia State University.


Issued in furtherance of Cooperative Extension work, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, Virginia State University, and the U.S. Department of Agriculture cooperating. Edwin J. Jones, Director, Virginia Cooperative Extension, Virginia Tech, Blacksburg; M. Ray McKinnie, Interim Administrator, 1890 Extension Program, Virginia State University, Petersburg.


April 8, 2015