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Woolly apple aphid (Eriosoma lanigerum) differs from other apple aphids in appearance, life cycle, and type of damage it inflicts. Unlike other aphids, it feeds on all parts of the tree, above and below ground. Woolly apple aphid (WAA) colonies appear as cottony masses, generally clustered in wounds and leaf axles toward tree centers. WAA is purple and surrounded by white, cottony, thread-like secretions. Honeydew or sooty mold on leaves or fruit are a common indication of aphid presence.

Woolly apple aphids covering a branch (Bessin, UKY)
Woolly apple aphids covering a branch.

(Photo: Ricardo Bessin, University of Kentucky)

Woolly apple aphid on roots (Bessin, UKY)
Woolly apple aphid on roots.

(Photo: Ricardo Bessin, University of Kentucky)

   

Management:

  • Higher volume sprays due to insect’s protective waxy covering
  • Semi-resistant rootstocks (M.111 and M.106)

    

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