Guava is a delicious tropical fruit loved by many, but it is also highly susceptible to various pests that can wreak havoc on the plant and its fruits. This blog post will explore the major pests that infest guava trees, their identification, and the damage they can cause. We will also discuss effective methods of prevention and control to help you protect your guava plants and ensure a healthy harvest. So, let’s check out how to treat pests of Guava tree below.
Major and Common Pests of Guava: Identification and Symptoms
Fruit fly: The adult fruit fly is brown or dark brown with hyaline wings and yellow legs. Symptoms: Fruit fly adults and maggots target semi-ripe fruits. Look for oviposition punctures on the fruits. Maggots destroy the pulp, turning it into a bad-smelling, discolored semi-liquid mass.
Guava fruit borers/pomegranate butterfly: The adult butterfly is bluish-brown with a V-shaped patch on the forewing. Symptoms: Caterpillars bore into young fruits, feeding on the internal contents and making the fruit hollow. Infested fruits may rot and drop prematurely.
Castor capsule borer: The adult moth is yellow-colored with black dots. Symptoms: Larvae bore into stems and damaged capsules. They may also attack buds and tender shoots. Infected fruits dry up, become deformed, and fall off before ripening.
Bark-eating caterpillar: The adult moth is white with small black dots on the thorax and numerous spots and streaks on the forewings. Symptoms: Look for irregular tunnels and patches covered with silken webs on shoots, branches, stems, and the main trunk. Holes on the trunk with wood dust and fecal matter indicate infestation. Severe damage can lead to stem death, and larvae can be found beneath fresh webbing.
Tea mosquito bug: The adult bug is reddish-brown with a black head, red thorax, black and white abdomen, and a knob-like process on the mid-dorsal thorax. Symptoms: Nymphs and adults puncture petioles, tender shoots, and fruits. Brownish-black necrotic patches develop on foliage. Elongate streaks and patches can appear on shoots, while corky scab formation may occur on fruits.
Mealy bug: The adult female is apterous, long, slender, and covered with white waxy secretions. Symptoms: Mealybugs suck sap from twigs, leaves, and flowers, leading to the development of unevenly shaped and poor-quality fruits. They are major pests of vegetables, ornamental plants, and tropical orchard trees, attacking various plant species.
Aphid: Adult aphids come in small, winged, wingless forms that reproduce parthenogenetically. Symptoms: Nymphs and adults suck sap from leaves, shoots, and fruits. Look out for yellowing leaves and wilting of terminal shoots.
Whitefly: Adult whiteflies are small, winged insects with light yellow bodies covered in white waxy powder. Symptoms: Whitefly infestations cause chlorotic spots, Yellowing, downward curling, and drying of leaves. Additionally, whiteflies act as vectors for potato leaf curl disease.
How to Treat Pests of Guava Tree
Thrips (Red Banded Thrips) Pest Management in Guava
Thrips are small insects, about 1.5mm in size, with a slender shape. They have a dark brown to black coloration, and the female thrips have a red color on the abdominal segments.
- Distribution: Thrips are commonly found in tropical and non-tropical countries.
- Other Host Plants: Thrips can infest cashew, pineapple, apple, and cereals.
- Symptoms: Coarse stippling on the guava plant leaves, Silvery appearance on the leaves, Distortion of leaves.
Management of Thrips
- Apply reflective mulches early in the growing season.
- Avoid planting guava near onions, cereals, and garlic.
- Timely application of insecticides.
Tea Mosquito Bug Pest Management in Guava
The female tea mosquito bug inserts around 32 eggs into the tender shoot, inflorescence axis, and tender fruits of the guava plant. The eg