If your shrubs are struggling, scale insects could be the culprit! Scale insects commonly infest shrubs in Texas and feed on them. There are two types: armored and soft. Adults range in color from gray to brown and range in shape from round to oyster. Both types, however, will feed on the branches or foliage of your shrubs, causing them to wither and break off before eventually killing the plant. As soon as you suspect your shrubs are battling a scale insect infestation, you should contact professionals right away. They will confirm the presence of the insects and apply an effective treatment to eliminate them.

What are scale insects?

Scale insects on the green branch of a shrub in Austin, TX.

If your shrubs seem to be struggling lately, it might be due to a scale insect infestation! These pests commonly target and feed on shrubs. There are two types of scale insects: armored and soft. Armored scale insects have hard covers over them, often with overlapping layers that are separate from their actual bodies. Soft scale insects are typically larger than armored ones. They also differ in that they generally don't have a cover over their bodies. If present, however, the cover is smooth and integrated with their bodies. They also produce honeydew, unlike armored scales, which can be found on the infested areas of your shrubs. Adults of both types vary in color and shape, ranging from gray, white, or brown to round, pear, or oyster-shaped. They also both enjoy feeding on branch tissue or foliage of shrubs.

What damage do scale insects cause?

Scale insects love to feed on either the foliage or branches of shrubs. If left uncontrolled, they will ultimately cause severe damage. If they feed on the foliage of the shrub, the result is the foliage turning yellow before eventually dying and breaking off. As scale insects feed on the branches of shrubs, they kill the individual cells located within them. When the cells die, resources, such as water and nutrients, can no longer be efficiently transported through the limb of the shrub. The end result is the limb dying and breaking off your plant. If the infestation is heavy enough, their feeding can kill the entire shrub.

Damage caused by scale insects ranges from dead branch tips and deformed leaves to entire branch death and loss of sections in your shrub's canopy.

What should you do if you suspect a scale infestation?

Noticing tiny shells attached to the branches or leaves of your shrubs could indicate a scale insect infestation! If it isn't treated promptly, it could quickly spread, damaging your shrubs and, in time, killing them. To prevent this from happening, contact professionals as soon as you suspect a scale insect infestation. They'll come out to your property to confirm the presence of these insects. Once they determine your shrubs are infested with scale insects, they'll administer a curative treatment to effectively eliminate them. You can then have peace of mind knowing your shrubs are safe.

Give us a call today to schedule our shrub disease and insect control service.

If you suspect your shrubs are suffering from a scale insect infestation, don't hesitate to reach out to us at Century Lawn and Landscape. Our shrub disease and insect control service is designed to eradicate a range of diseases and insects affecting shrubs. It's offered as needed and is an add-on service to our shrub fertilization service. This ensures your shrubs are not only insect-free but strong and healthy as well! We offer this service to residential properties in Austin, Bee Cave, Dripping Springs, Cedar Park, Rollingwood, TX, and other nearby cities. Give us a call at (512) 786-1694 to sign up!