Vine weevils are one of the many insects you will find in your garden that is known to cause significant damage to plants. It would help to know which plants vine weevils love to feed on, so you can take measures to ensure they remain safe. So, what plants do vine weevils like?
Unfortunately, vine weevils like to eat different plants and tend not to show any preferences for a particular plant. They will eat flowers, fruits and vegetables!
The major preference that vine weevils have is that they like to consume plants that do not have strong fragrances. Any plant with a strong smell will deter vine weevils, so it is safe from damage.
Some of the plants which vine weevils like to eat include fuchsias, strawberries and primulas. It would be best to keep an eye out for vine weevils before they damage the entire plant as the damage can be irreversible if extensive.
Do Vine Weevils Attack All Plants?
Vine weevils have a varied diet, so most of the plants in your garden are at risk. One of the major issues is the way adult vine weevils and larvae operate is different.
The adult vine weevils mainly focus on the foliage and surface-level damage. Plants will have ragged leaves and flowers if weevils are eating them. The appearance of the plant will begin to look shabby.
Although unpleasant to look at, adult vine weevils are not the problem; the young larvae do most of the damage.
Vine weevil larvae have to eat a lot so they can be strong and develop into adults. These insects will eat at the roots of the plants, causing them to become extremely weak. One of the major problems is plants suffering from diseases due to huge infestations, which can quickly go out of control if left unattended.
As the damage is being caused at the roots, it’s also hard to know you have an infestation until it’s too late.
While weevils feed on a majority of plants, there are some which are favourites. If you have these plants in your garden or are planning to grow them, you must be conscious about having vine weevils in your garden.
Some of the plants which are susceptible to attacks by vine weevils include cyclamen, fuchsias, polyanthus, primulas, strawberries and heucheras. Fortunately, there are some plants weevils dislike.
While vine weevils consume many plants, there are some that they do not like as much. Some plants which weevils do not appreciate include mint, lemon, lemon-scented geraniums and lavender.
How Do You Protect Plants from Vine Weevils?
Vine weevils can quickly take over your garden if infested and cause a lot of damage. The plants you have will not only be damaged at the surface. There are also diseases that vine weevils can spread.
Therefore, it would be best if you learned to protect the plants you have from weevils:
The first thing you must do is to identify that you have vine weevils in your garden – and not another pest such as thrips.
You can do this by looking carefully at the damage caused by these insects. If you are facing an infestation, the plants will have wilted leaves and will not grow to their full potential. If the damage is extensive and at the root level, your plants can also die.
Unfortunately, pests in general cause similar forms of damage so try to look closely at the insects in question. Shake the plant and allow a few to drop onto a sheet of white paper so you can further inspect the insects on the plants.
Remove By Hand
You can handpick these insects if you have spotted one or two vine weevils and the infestation is fairly new. A reason why this is a good idea is that you do not need to use any chemicals.
Many people, rightly, refrain from using insecticides, especially those with an organic garden. To avoid the ick of dealing with insects, you can always wear gloves to pick from the plants.
Applying nematodes is a good way to handle vine weevils and other insects such as slugs. You can choose to apply nematodes in your garden into the soil directly. Or, you can create traps with nematodes, place them in your garden where you spot vine weevils the most, and kill them.
It would be effective to put these traps under plants that are vulnerable to vine weevils.
An overall approach to dealing with vine weevils, in the long run, can be to have some natural predators in your garden. This will control not only the vine weevil population but also other problematic insects too.
There are different predators which feed on vine weevils, including hedgehogs, birds and frogs.
Vine weevils love to feed on a variety of plants, including different kinds of fruits, vegetables and flowers. The adult vine weevils do most of the damage at the surface level as they like to consume mainly foliage.
On the other hand, vine weevil larvae like to attack the roots of the plants, weakening them. This results in stunted growth, and the plant eventually dies.
Ryan is a keen gardener from the UK who’s spent years dealing with countless, common pests over the years so knows the ins and outs of how to deal with pests in the garden