Landscaping expert suggests way to battle Japanese beetle
MILWAUKEE - Some people in Southeastern Wisconsin have discovered that the number of Japanese beetles in Wisconsin has grown in the past few years.
A landscaping expert tells us that the way to take care of the problem is to use something most people have around their house: dishwashing detergent.
"We recommend that most people pick them off and drown them in a solution of water and dish soap," said Bret Achtenhagen of Newsradio 620 WTMJ's "Designer Yard Show."
"Just take care of them that way. It won't be long until they're gone. They'll be around for six for eight weeks. If you pick away a little every day, you'll keep them under control."
He admits that you'll have to repeat the process often to get rid of the pesky beetles.
"It is (labor intensive). There are other ways that you can deal with these pests, but for most people, that's the way they prefer to deal with it."
What do these beetles like for lunch on your property?
"Typically, they focus on a few different types of plants, roses and linden trees. Before you know it, they devour a very significant amount of the leaf canopy of a linden tree. They do a lot of damage in a little bit of time," explained Achtenhagen.
What do they look like?
"The animator at Disney couldn't have done a better job at designing these things. They're an iridescent greenish-bronze beetle with a very hard jacket. I guess it's a little bit smaller than a marble, smaller than a penny. They're large enough to notice. You can't miss them."
He also says not to use traps on the beetles.
"They will discourage (beetles), but they really don't kill them because they have such a hard shell."