The following are highlights and updates about samples and questions recently received in the Plant & Insect Diagnostic Clinic:
The past few weeks we have received a lot of Bur oak blight samples. Bur oak blight is a relatively newly recognized disease in Iowa and nearby states that is a problem mainly for older Bur oaks that are on upland sights. For more information on bur oak blight please see this HHPN article.
We also received a sample of gray leaf spot on turf. It is a sporadic disease that we cannot recall seeing in the past decade. Please see this information from Purdue University for more information.
Baldfaced hornet nests become noticeable in the fall because they have reached their maximum size in the fall, and because the camouflage provided by the summer foliage is falling away. See our online article for information about collecting and preserving a hornet's nest.
The common fruit flies become increasingly annoying in the fall of the year. The occasional fruit fly is likely an accidental invader carried in with produce from the garden. But a large, consistent problem indicates the fruit flies are breeding indoors and fruit on the countertop is never the source. Look for a slow-moving or seldom-used drain as described in our online article.
You gotta love the praying mantis. For reasons we can't explain, this has been another good year for spotting this unique, easily-recognized insect in central and north-central Iowa.
Links to this article are strongly encouraged, and this article may be republished without further permission if published as written and if credit is given to the author, Horticulture and Home Pest News, and Iowa State University Extension and Outreach. If this article is to be used in any other manner, permission from the author is required. This article was originally published on September 14, 2011. The information contained within may not be the most current and accurate depending on when it is accessed.