I’ve been receiving calls on webworms that are in trees surrounding Ladybird Lake. we also have webworms in a tree at the Demonstration Garden. Since it’s a demonstration garden, I’m using the webworms as a….you guessed it!….demonstration.
I’m sure that you have been told (even possibly by me) that you can manage webworms by removing webs and knocking them out the tree with a stick. I decided to see how well it actually works. So far, it’s going pretty well. I started two weeks ago when we had a pretty good covering of webs on the tree. I took a metal pole (actually the handle of an insect net which I had in my office) and removed as much of the webbing as I could from the branches. I made a pile of webbing and caterpillars on the ground while removing the webs and that got taken to the garbage when I was finished. I also whacked on the tree branches a few times after removing as much of the webbing as I could to dislodge any caterpillars. I repeated the process every Monday and Friday. Today when I checked on the webworms, there was only one small new web spun very close to a small branch. The rest of the area has dead leaves and some loose webbing clinging to the branches, but the webworms aren’t actively there anymore. I removed the small section of webbing I found today and whacked the branch. I’ll check the situation again on Monday. While I’m not completely done with the demonstration, so far it is looking pretty good.