If you are wondering what is eating away your plants, it may be vine weevils. Not only do the adults pose a problem, but the larvae too. One of the best ways to determine if you have a vine weevil problem is to look for their eggs. But, what do vine weevil eggs look like?
Vine weevil eggs in your garden are small and white in colour.
Vine weevil eggs are found in compost or garden soil. These eggs are quite small, sometimes even less than 1mm, and are white in colour. However, as soon as the eggs are about to hatch, they turn into a darker, brown colour, making it difficult to find them as they blend into the soil.
What Colour are Vine Weevil Eggs?
Freshly laid vine weevil eggs are white, but as time progresses, the eggs turn brown when they are about to hatch. This makes it difficult for people to recognize the eggs in the soil because they perfectly camouflage against the brown of the soil.
Many people who find transparent eggs in their garden soil confuse them for vine weevil eggs. However, this is not the case. It is important to distinguish between eggs and know that vine weevils always lay eggs that are white and later turn brown.
If you find transparent eggs, you should be on the lookout for slugs and snails. Similarly, any other different coloured egg should have you looking out for other insects.
Where Do You Find Vine Weevil Eggs?
Obviously, you will not be able to find vine weevil eggs if you are not looking for them in the right place. Every insect comes with a preference when it comes to laying its eggs. Most insects, including vine weevils, will look for a host plant when deciding to lay eggs.
The adult female vine weevil will lay eggs near the base of plants, beneath the surface of the soil. The female will pick a plant that it thinks will provide ample nutrition to the vine weevils when they hatch.
You should also be checking your compost heap for eggs. It can be tedious to look for the eggs since they are small and similarly coloured to the compost and soil. In fact, it’s often a losing battle, unfortunately!
There are also some species of vine weevils that do not lay eggs in the soil but rather inside the plant seed or stem. In this case, the female vine weevil will make a hole in the plant, lay her eggs and then seal it, making it impossible to find!
How Long Does It Take for a Vine Weevil Egg to Hatch?
There are many species of vine weevils, each having characteristics that separate them from one another. Adult vine weevils can live as long as two or three months and, during their lifetime, can mate and lay eggs several times.
A female vine weevil can lay as many as 150 eggs in one go, which only shows how fast these insects can spread throughout your garden. The eggs take three days to hatch and for the larvae to come out. Vine weevil larvae look a lot like worms or maggots.
The larvae cause extensive damage to the plants as they burrow in the soil and eat the roots causing damage you cannot see until it is too late, unfortunately.
The larvae enter the pupal stage after two months and then, three weeks later, emerge as adults to damage the upper parts of the plant. Vine weevils feed on all parts of the plant, causing it to be completely damaged.
What Is the Lifecycle of a Vine Weevil?
Vine weevils are brownish, blackish insects that can be found during the warmer months in gardens. These insects are nocturnal, which means they are quite active during the nighttime. As for the daytime, vine weevils hide between the soil and inside plant pots.
Vine weevils will lay eggs as July begins in temperate climates. The eggs are quite small, and the process goes on until October. The eggs hatch and release the larvae that are white and appear like grubs. The larvae usually spend most of their time in the roots of the plants, eating them away.
During the cooler temperatures, the larvae will overwinter, but they become active as it starts to get warm.
The larvae move on to the pupal stage during spring inside the soil, emerging as adults. Unfortunately, vine weevils cannot fly, which limits them compared to other insects.
However, vine weevils can still travel quite fast, and some females can reproduce independently, which is enough for them to continue their species and cause extensive infestations.
One of the problems associated with vine weevils and controlling them is largely related to their eggs. The eggs are small, less than 1mm, and are white in colour. By the time the egg matures and is about to hatch, it turns brown. This makes it difficult to detect the eggs in the soil.
Vine weevils lay eggs at the base of plant pots, inside the soil. Some species of vine weevils tend to lay eggs inside the stem of the plant. It would be helpful to get rid of vine weevils during the springtime before they lay eggs. Otherwise, you will be facing a bad infestation.
Anna is a keen organic gardener, avoiding any forms of chemicals when growing both flowers and vegetables meaning she has extensive knowledge on how to deal with pests naturally