December has arrived and the holiday season is in full-swing. Many people will venture out this weekend to purchase their Christmas tree. If you are trimming the tree this weekend, it’s important to understand what you need to do to prevent transporting insects into your home.
Common Christmas Tree Insects
Christmas trees typically contain small insects that you will likely not be able to see. Aphids, which are sap-sucking insects, are often found on Christmas trees. Another common insect found on Christmas trees are adelgids which give off a white cotton secretion and often are visible on trees. Mites, spiders, and bark battles, are also frequently found on Christmas trees.
Inspecting Your Tree
Before bringing your beloved Christmas tree inside of your home, or before you even strap it to your car, you should make sure that your tree is insect-free. Bring a light to shine directly on the trunk of tree in order to search for insects that might be lingering. If you see small holes in the trunk, this could indicate that bark beetles are likely inside. You should also check the undersides of the branches and needles as well. Before you bring your Christmas tree inside of your home, shake your tree as hard as you can to dislodge insects and loose needles.
Putting Your Tree Up
We all want to ensure that we have an insect-free tree but you should never spray aerosol pesticides on your tree. These products contain many chemicals that are very flammable. They should be sprayed onto something that will have hot light bulbs on it. Most of the insects living within your Christmas tree cannot survive inside due to lack of food and humidity. If you do find any lingering insects, you simply vacuum them up.
If you do experience pest issues this winter, contact Blue Ridge Termite and Pest Management Group and we can help take care of it for you.