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Black Pineleaf Scale :
Step one: Identify the pest and tolerance threshold. One scale every couple of inches of needle is not that bad. Starting at about 4 scales per inch, growth becomes stunted, which is why the trees look so funny. 20+scales per inch will kill the tree.
Step two: Buy appropriate material. (click on highlighted key words for direct shopping links)
ALWAYS READ PESTICIDE LABELS FROM FRONT TO BACK FOR ALL PERTINENT INFORMATION AND SAFTEY REQUIREMENTS
- Dinotefuran (one quart per 10 trees, give or take, depending on the size) Note: This is a neonicotinoid. If used incorrectly and against label instructions this pesticide has been reported to be dangerous to bees. Neonics are great tools for responsible hands. Not unlike a wrench or a hammer, which if used incorrectly could also kill bees.
- Pentrabark (6 oz. per quart of Dinotefuran)
- Two gallon sprayer
- Nitril Gloves
- Safety Glasses
- Long sleeve shirt and long pants
- Shoes and socks
- Soaker hose
NOTE: You can also get great control of scale during their crawler stage in June with a 1-2% solution of mineral oil and water applied directly to the infested needles if you can access the foliage with your sprayer equipment. This is easiest on little trees unless you have a bucket truck. Use 1% solution if temperature are going to exceed 75 degrees to avoid burning the needles. 🙂
Step 3: Timing
Best uptake happens three to four days after a good rain, on breezy days with temperatures from 65-75 degrees Fahrenheit. Studies suggest the best time of year for treatment is in May or June. I have had success treating Pines after supplemental irrigation with soaker hoses. The hoses run overnight for one night two days prior to treatment. Please consult an irrigation specialist for help setting up your system.
Step 4: LOOK FOR NEARBY FLOWERING PLANTS THAT COULD BE IN THE PATH OF MATERIAL DRIFT. THIS PRODUCT CAN BE HAZARDOUS TO HONEY BEES IF MATERIAL IS ALLOWED TO SETTLE ON FLOWERS OR OTHER BEE FORAGING SITES. AVOID TREATING THOSE TREES OR SET UP A BARRIER TO PROTECT NEARBY FLOWERS. This is bark applied systemic insecticide. If applied correctly, there is NO RISK TO BEES.
Step 5: Spray lowest 4 feet of trunk on trees with solution (One quart of Dinotefuran and 6 oz of Pentra Bark to 1.75 gallons of water)
Step 6: Repeat Step 3.
LIMITATIONS: DO NOT EXCEED 5 GALLONS OF MIXED SOLUTION PER ACRE PER YEAR. IF NECESSARY, ALTERNATE TREATMENTS ACCORDING TO SEVERITY OF OUTBREAK. DO NOT APPLY WHEN WIND OR OTHER CONDITIONS WILL MOVE SPRAY PARTICLES IN CONTACT WITH SURFACE WATER OR PLANTS IN FLOWER.