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  Something eating bark on my burning bush!!!

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derek_mahlitz
Joined: 4/05/2009
Location: Ballston Spa
Posts: 2
Posted: Apr/05/2009 4:00 PM PST

After the snow melted away from the bottom of our burning bush I noticed the bark was eaten away up to about 12 inches from the ground level on 80% of the limbs. Any idea what ate it and what I can do to protect it going forward.
gardenerjohngo photos
Joined: 4/04/2009
Location:
Posts: 38
Posted: Apr/05/2009 4:15 PM PST

Any evidence of a vole/mole nested there for the winter? I've got that a lot with them nesting in spirea and other plants. Sometimes they will nibble away at the bark. For one, Burning Bush is considered an invasive species. Some nurseries no longer sell them for that reason but it's too late for that since everyone has them in their yards now. If it's voles then there is two things to think about. Voles are there to eat grubs in the lawn which will turn into Japanese Beetles. If you have a Japanese Beetle problem then the voles aren't so bad. You can either get rid of the voles temporarily only for them to return again to gorge themselves on the grubs or treat the lawn with nematodes or a grub guard. There are organic and chemical solutions. I'd prefer people use non-organic. There are also electronic devices you can implant in the ground that send a signal to interrupt the vole/moles hearing driving them away. Buy one for around $30 and use it just before the winter and let them destroy your neighbors shrubs.
Have fun.
Johngo
derek_mahlitz
Joined: 4/05/2009
Location: Ballston Spa
Posts: 2
Posted: Apr/05/2009 4:22 PM PST

Thanks for the quick reply. When is a good time to start applying for Grubs? I live in Upstate NY just north of Albany.
gardenerjohngo photos
Joined: 4/04/2009
Location:
Posts: 38
Posted: Apr/06/2009 6:19 PM PST

Depends on what you are using to treat for grubs. Check with North country organics to see when they start taking orders for nematodes or contact your garden center to find out more information. Usually, they'll recommend milky spore which will last 10 - 15 years. The first two to three years you will notice a small difference. I'd say close to memorial day for most products. Now is too early.
cougar blog photos
Joined: 8/24/2008
Location: Kentucky
Posts: 1184
Posted: Apr/07/2009 8:31 AM PST

Oh, I have a question. I keep hearing that Burning Bushes are invasive. I kinda get what invasive means. But could someone please explain to me, what that really means to this KY girl. I have two and they are just looking points in my yard and they have not taken over or intruded on anything. I have always wanted to know what the invasive thing meant. Thx for explaining so now I can check that off of one of my many questions.
gardenerjohngo photos
Joined: 4/04/2009
Location:
Posts: 38
Posted: Apr/11/2009 12:14 PM PST

Invasive more less means it competes with native species and is easy to propagate. Because you don't see a burning bush growing next to the plant you are growing doesn't mean that all the seeds haven't germinated somewhere else. Certain perennials will pop up all over the place by layering while others with be found in clumps. Plants like Japanese bittersweet is an example of a highly invasive plant. It is used as a holiday decoration for thanksgiving because the berries are a bright read with a yellow case-thingy(very scientific) that surrounds it. Every one of them usually forms another plant. There are entire areas in Maine that are covered with this vine.

Purple loostrife is a huge invasive plant that no one in Maine is doing anything about. It has a "pretty" purple flower. It was brought in from Canada originally as a female plant and sold at Nurseries with the idea that no one would bring in the male counterpart. Well, they did. And it has taken over all the swamp land. There is a protected Audubon marsh in the southern part of the state that is now all Loosestrife. No one complains about it and the state has done very little to get rid of it.
witt blog photos
Joined: 3/28/2008
Location: Lancaster, SC
Posts: 16643
Moderator
Posted: Apr/12/2009 4:41 AM PST

"If it's voles then there is two things to think about. Voles are there to eat grubs in the lawn which will turn into Japanese Beetles."

I don't mean to be a know-it-all, but voles don't eat grubs or earthworms. They are strictly vegetarians. It's the Moles that eat grubs and earthworms.
cougar blog photos
Joined: 8/24/2008
Location: Kentucky
Posts: 1184
Posted: Apr/14/2009 8:17 AM PST

Ooooooh, got it gardenerjohn. Thank ya, check. Oh, Witt you do know-it-all, just kidding, I have seen alot of answers you have given and comments and by golly you know alot! I am gonna pat you on the back and say, well done my friend. I know alot about alot of stuff too, so I am a know-it-all too..
gardenerjohngo photos
Joined: 4/04/2009
Location:
Posts: 38
Posted: Apr/16/2009 9:41 PM PST

Your right. I stand corrected. Thanks. It's kinda of humiliating to send out inaccurate information. Didn't know there was much of a difference between them critters. Huh. You rock.
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