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In recent years winter moth caterpillars and gypsy moth caterpillars have overtaken the properties and trees of many Massachusetts homes.

Winter Moth caterpillars are the small, green inchworms that emerge in early spring, Gypsy Moth caterpillars are their larger, dark and fuzzy counterparts. Both types of caterpillars are major defoliators of oak trees and other deciduous trees. Repeated defoliation from these caterpillars will stress trees and make them more susceptible to other diseases or organisms which can ultimately kill the trees.

Winter Moth Caterpillars

The winter moth is an invasive insect that has historically wrecked havoc on Cape Cod’s Oak, Maple and Apple trees. If you’ve ever sat or parked your car under a tree in the spring, you’re sure to be familiar with this non-native pest. The treatment window for winter moth caterpillars is a small one, usually beginning mid-April to May. Managing winter moth caterpillars when they are small will often result in reduced damage to your tree’s foliage.

Gypsy Moth Caterpillars

The gypsy moth overwinters as an egg in a cluster of 500 or more eggs. Here on Cape Cod, gypsy moth eggs typically hatch in the spring during the first week in May. Variations in climate and spring weather can either accelerate or delay egg hatching. The larvae will continue to feed until the end of June, when the caterpillars then drop to the ground to pupate. The treatment window for Gypsy Moth caterpillars typically lasts from early-spring (overlapping with Winter Moth Caterpillars treatments) until the end of June.

Alfieri Tree Care offers conventional and organic solutions to treat winter moth and gypsy moth caterpillars. After 15 minutes rain will not alter effectiveness of either spray treatment!

Treatments are:

  • Safe for children and pets
  • Applied by an ISA Certified Arborist (NE-7156A)

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