Continuing Education continues!

Hank Pena, a valued team member for the past 2 years has completed the Purdue University Introduction to Urban and Industrial Integrated Pest Management, offered through Purdue University Digital Education in Integrated Pest Management, a leader for over twenty years.  This advanced training is an important part of the level of professionalism that distinguishes Greenhow service.  Each year service team members complete courses or accreditations to improve their knowledge.  Combined with field and office training the result is service team members with the most knowledge and resources in the industry backed up with the tools they need to take care of our customers.  Currently we have team members involved in, just completed or studying for 7 different advanced training courses, programs and certifications!

Tree Identification – Great school vacation activities

Winter Tree Id Acorn Line Up – Which one fell on your head?

If you have little minds on or near school vacation, consider having them use their feet, eyes and brains to figure out what kind of trees are in their environment. This tool from the National Arbor Day Website you can access by clicking here will help, but looking at the bark, needles, twigs and most importantly, seeds or cones, make winter tree identification a rewarding challenge.

Diapause-and other winter insect survival strategies.

Diapause is an inactive state when animals do not develop any further.  Some insects use diapause to overwinter in cold climates.  Many insects also burrow done to shelter out of the way of wind, cold temperatures and other weather impacts.  Grubs and termites underground stay just below the frostline, yellowjacket and ant queens are under bark, logs and rocks.  Ladybugs and cluster flies are aggregated in groups in tight spaces like cracks in rocks or cracks in trees or in window frames or other components of your home.  In addition, many insects, such as ants, produce alcohols that act as antifreeze allowing them to survive temperatures below freezing.  As temperatures, humidity and sunlight all increase in the spring insects will start to venture out of their winter shelters to find food sources.

Ants are back!

Ants are back.  Starting about a week ago with little black ants showing up in kitchens and near fireplaces or furnaces, ants are starting to appear.  As insects wake up, they are hungry for food and start to forage close to their nesting sites.  Carpenter ants have already been reported and carpenter ants swarms will begin shortly as days continue to grow longer and we get intermittent warm days on top of increasing sunlight.  When they are sighted they are normally within several feet of the nest so your reports of ants this time of year through early spring will lead to great control of ants nesting in the structure.

Winter Feeder-Hemlock Woolly Adelgid

Hemlock woolly adelgid egg masses produced in late winter often looks like snow between the needles of a hemlock.  The adelgid is a microscopic winter feeder of sap from hemlocks and can kill hemlocks if left untreated.  This small pest is a serious threat to hemlocks in the northeast causing hemlock decline and death.

Mid winter anti-desiccant applications soon!

Anti desiccant or anti transpirant means to keep from drying out or keep from transpiring.  This plant health care application is done in late November or early December for the first round, then a second time when we get a mid winter thaw.  We have just started the second round and will finish the second mid winter round next week.  This application is a wax material that is sprayed on the leaf tissue of evergreens, such as boxwood, pieris or rhododendrons.  The wax keeps the stomates from opening and water from leaving the leaf when there is little available ground moisture (due to it being frozen) to replace it.  Once moisture leaves the leave and is not replaced the leaf tissue may turn brown and look burned.

Winter Burn Boxwood

Meal moth larva exposed!

January resolutions include cleaning up & getting rid of old useless items in your life. In your kitchen cabinets remove expired food product. Meal moths love flour, baking mixes, nuts, teas, even potpourri. Photo is a jar of nuts with meal moth larva eating them.   It has gotten a little out of control since the nuts are covered in silken webbing. Use tight fitting screw on lids to minimize infestations and turn over your inventory (don’t save things you will never use!) to keep your cereals fresh.

Groundhog Day again!

Groundhog Day! Again! In New England groundhogs, or woodchucks, have 2 entries to the burrow, one exposed & one hidden by deck, shed, vegetation.  Typically customers call in the middle of summer when a groundhog is caught laying about in the sun or eating the vegetable garden.  There are a variety of control methods, the most successful

are to make your property unfriendly to groundhogs.  From pulling up the welcome mat by fencing your garden well and letting your dog patrol the area control measures then move up to trapping and removal by a licensed wildlife control agent.  Call us for help for do it yourself or for a trapper to consider using.