;ot F F i RID ,
i 3--AT TH
STA m LTURAL COLLEGE,
LAKE CITY, FLORIDA..
ENTOMOLOGICAL NOTES. JAS. C. NEAL, M. D.
REV. JAS. P. DEPASS, DIRECTOR.
DACOSTA PRINTING AND PUBLISHING HOUSE.
REV. J. P. DEPASS. . DIRECTOR.
DR. J. C. NEAL . . .ENTOMOLOGIST AND BOTANIST.
DR. J. M. PICKELL . CHEMIST.
J. J. EARLE, A. B. . ASSISTANT CHEMIST.
JAMES C. NEAL, M. D.
It is very common to ridicule the efforts of practical entomologists,
and belittle the results obtained by their methods of preventing or mit-
igating the ravages of insects, but the fact remains that at no distant
date no farming will be a success without considerable knowledge of
the habits of insect foes and the means devised to oppose them.
Already in many sections the agriculturist realizes that he may
fertilize his soil, plant the best of seed, it may rain, the sun may shine,
still his crops are at the mercy of his insect enemies, and he reaps a
paying crop, or is ruined at the sweet will of despicable intruders who
make up in numbers what they lack in strength. North of us, the cold
gives some respite, but in Florida there is practically no such relief.
Does the farmer plant an ordinary crop, from its germination to fruit-
ing, it is assailed by bugs, worms and beetles. If fruits are the staple,
half a hundred insects invade the grove, and what with scale, spider
mites, borers, curculios, weevils, aphides, grasshoppers, bugs and
beetles-the grove and orchard with their luscious fruits are in constant
The enemies of the forest, grove, garden and field are legion -
rarely a plant escaping, and especially does it seem, at times, that our
best food plants are marked for destruction.
At the lowest calculation, the average loss of crops to the farmers
of Florida is not less than 20 per cent., and often half or all of some
staples-a direct and always collected tax paid by those least able to pay,
and a loss of time, money and labor, of hopes and plans not to be es-
timated in the sordid way of dollars and cents.
When a cotton field is destroyed by the cotton-worm (Aletia), as
if swept by fire, it means a whole year's toil is wasted; it means un-
paid debts, foreclosed mortgages and the gaunt spectre of want just
ahead. Nor is this all; many farmers could make enough corn to do
from one crop to the next, were it not for the weevil and various insect
pests that infest the corn crib, and it is almost impossible to secure
cow-peas, at times, for seed, such is the destruction of this staple by
beetles and weevil; even keeping them in the pods does not secure the
The loss to farmers in this way, after all the trouble of making
and harvesting, is a tax of at least 25 per cent.
To aid our farmers in evading this tremendous tax is the labor of
love of practical entomologists, and I beg every farmer in Florida, into
whose hands this Bulletin may fall, to read carefully, and then con-
tribute his aid, in the future, in the investigation of the habits of these
pests, for it is directly in the line of self-interest.
I propose to give plain, brief statements of what is known of some
of our worst insect foes, with few scientific terms or details, compiling
freely from all accessible sources. These extracts, with points obtained
from correspondence and original observation, without any particular
care in the arrangement of subjects, or claim to originality in treating
them, most serve as this preliminary study of the pests of the farm,
grove and garden.
There are remedies applied either to the affected plant as a pre-
ventive, to the food-plant, or breeding ground of the insect, or to the
insect itself. Kerosene, petroleum, whale oil soap, resin or arsenical
soaps, the oils of tansy, mint, pennyroyal, cedar, tar or cade, thymol,
cresylic acid, carbolic acid, alcohol, etc., are generally used in watery,
milky or soapy emulsions. They are applied with a spray-pump, and
really no farm is complete without one of these invaluable tools.
Sulphur in powder, kerosened lime, sulphureted lime, Pyrethrum
powder, hellebore, quassia and tobacco are all valuable: but for most
insects, arsenic in some form is most efficacious, especially when added
to emulsions of soap or kerosene. In this form it makes certainty of
death to any insect it may touch.
Powders are best applied in the early morning, while the dew is
on and insects are chilled and sluggish. Solutions and emulsions do
better after a slight rain.
THE ROOT-KNOT WORM (Ieterodera radicicola).
Nothing has been a greater mystery to the average planter in
Florida than the effects of this microscopic thread-worm. As long as
the land was new, but little trouble was felt from this cause, but with
the influx of fruit growers and gardeners, the use of old land stimulated
by nitrogenous fertilizers or composts, producing a rapid and weak
growth of roots, this tiny worm has arisen to the dignity of a pest that
threatens to destroy our gardens and orchards in time.
I am convinced that in many cases of failure in growing the
peach, fig, grape and early market gardens in old land, the Heterodera
is to blame, rather than the fertilizer, the soil or any influence of
weather. These worms average one hundredth of an inch in length,
are tapering at each end, whitish, and quite active; but the female,
when gravid, changes form rapidly, becoming much larger, often one-
twentieth of an inch long, and at maturity is little else than a sack of
eggs, that soon become free worms and seek new fields of operations.
About a month completes a generation. Entering the softer structures
of a root, they, in some way, cause an enlargement called a "knot"
that, having low vitality, soon decays, and the plant, deprived of sus-
tenance, speedily dies. The worms especially do great injury to
young nursery trees, early peas, beans, cow peas, pindars, cucumbers,
melons, squash, beets, radishes, turnips, cabbages, collards, celery,
parsley, cotton and okra, and really, nearly the whole catalogue of
ornamental and useful plants are more or less injured.
The practice of sowing cow-peas or pindars as a preliminary crop
for a garden or grove is only mentioned to be condemned, as these
plants become breeding grounds for the root-knot worms, that in time
transfer themselves to roots of valuable plants or trees.
My experience agrees with other observers, that any insecticide
powerful enough to kill, when mixed with the soil, the worms in
roots, invariably destroys the tree, and that prevention is the only
To this end we advise:
When possible, plant gardens or groves in virgin soil.
Avoid infected trees, or trees from infected nurseries.
As far as possible, obtain budded trees on non affected stocks.
Drain the land thoroughly. Trees grown on dry soil are less
affected by the root-knot. (Onderdonk.)
Some weeks before setting out trees, apply at least a ton of ashes,
kainit or other strong potash fertilizer to the acre, broad cast. This
produces a more resistant, woody and vigorous growth of roots.
For old fields: Plant two successive crops of cow peas; when
mature, plow around to loosen the roots, pull up the vines and burn
every root possible. Next year cultivate clean, exterminating all
weeds, especially the poke, Jerusalem oak, amaranth, pursley and tea-
weeds (Sida), burning the stems and roots; next-
Sterilize each spot where a tree is to grow by repeatedly heating
the soil. Heating, then digging out the soil, heating again, etc., till
thetubsoil is reached. Small fires of chips, weeds, etc., will easily
accomplish this with slight cost. In planting the tree fill in with the
sterilized 3oil, then use virgin soil or subsoil mixed freely with ashes,
potash or lime. This compost should be mixed and allowed to stand
some weeks prior to use.
These are caterpillars, usually naked or but slightly hairy, that
conceal themselves during the day, venturing out at night to feed on
tender vegetation. While this definition will apply well to at least 300
species in Florida, the gardener refers it to the larve of less than a dozen
of the families of Agrotis, AMamestra, and Hadena. In their perfect
form these are very modest colored, night-flying moths, hibernating
as worms during the winter months, with habits nearly alike. In
Florida, the November brood of the preceding year emerges from
its cocoon as early as February or March, mates, and soon begins lay-
ing eggs upon low weeds or grasses. The eggs hatch into worms that
soon enter the ground and feed on tender roots till midsummer, when
they do some damage in June and July. A little later they descend
deeper, form a cell, change to pupae or the inactive stage; in a month
more they work their way to the surface and new moths come out,
which in turn are the parents of worms that in January, February and
March are so destructive to our gardens and fields. Such is a brief
and very general history. As far as I have examined, the Agrotis
malefda, A. ypsilon, A. annexa, A. saucia, and A. sub-gothica are most
common-all dull gray, green or brown worms. This year they have
ruined many gardens and strawberry patches. One farmer dug out
an average of 600 daily, for a week, from a strawberry patch less than
one-tenth of an acre, and gave up the contest in disgust. Another
writes that he had frequently found forty near a single plant; another
averaged one worm to each square foot of garden; others lost several
settings of cabbage and tomatoes, and last year they were very
destructive to tobacco fields. It is safe to say that, one year with
another, all over our land, one-third of the early plantings of cabbage,
tobacco, tomatoes, cucumbers, peas and beans are destroyed by cut-
worms-a loss in time, money, labor and temper not to be estimated.
At times every crop is attacked, at others all are exempt-effects re-
sulting probably from prolongation of the cut-worm's period of in-
activity. Market gardens, hence, are in prime just as the worm is
coming to the surface after hibernation, and this suggests a possibility
of planting some crops, so as to have them germinate during the
pupation of the cut-worms, and perhaps also to arrange for fruiting to
also escape the boll-worm.
Another cut-worm is the" Zebra" (Mamestra picta). This worm has
three black and four yellow stripes lengthwise, the central stripe re-
sembling some ancient inscription in its queer divisions. The pupa is
red-brown and in six weeks a pretty moth emerges-fore wings brown,
hind wings whitish.
The Hadena devastatrix is a smooth, green worm, with a bright-
red head; the moth somewhat larger than the Agrotis annexa.
All the worms may be easily trapped in February in smooth holes,
or by chopping leaves and mixing some arsenical poison with them,
forming into balls, and laying these poisoned pellets under chips or
boards in infected fields. Every morning these balls should be gath-
ered, with the worms and click beetles found hiding, and all burned.
Plowing deeply in December will bring many of the worms to the
surface to die from cold and insect enemies, especially from the attacks
of the Harpalus beetles.
Copperas sprinkled around and in the furrows or hills of corn,
cabbage, etc., of course, largely diluted, is beneficial, and so is salt or
kainit, a spoonful sprinkled over each hill just after planting the seed.
The kerosene-lime powder I would recommend highly, used the same
Wrapping the stem in paper, an inch or so, is good for tomatoes
and cabbage. Sowing seed thickly is useful, and hand picking a cer-
tain method. Clean culture during the year, with building of fires in
August or September, will decrease the following winter crop of worms
THE COTTON WORM (Aletia Xylina-argillacea).
This caterpillar is famous as having destroyed, at least, fourteen
hundred millions of dollars in value of our great money crop," since
cotton attained general cultivation, and its habits have nearly defied
In burning off old wire-grass "roughs" in December, 1881, and
January, 1882, I disturbed hibernating cotton moths, and in March,
1882, in company with Mr. Koebele, I discovered eggs upon ratoon
cotton, that proved to be those of the Aletia, and this year, near Al-
bion, I saw a cotton moth in the pine woods, evidently having passed
the winter as a moth. These facts settle the question-the moth hiber-
nates in Florida, possibly in Louisiana and Texas, and at the beginning
of warm weather-by February i5th-seeks "ratoon cotton." It flies
from field to field, laying but few eggs at a place, until it exhausts its
stock of eggs, about four hundred, when it dies, often many miles away
from its winter haunt. These eggs hatch, the worms feed for three
weeks, "wrap up," and in about six weeks from the appearance of the
first moth a new brood appears, to repeat the history every month un-
til frost, when the sixth or seventh brood of females seek sheltered
nooks to spend the winter. Did all the eggs hatch, and have no mis-
hap, by September the increase would be four trillions, and cotton
would be a lost crop, but the chances are usually largely against such
a possibility. Two wet summers following t.wo dry winters would
probably increase the number of wintering moths and decrease the in-
sect foes, and result in a bad cotton year. A dry summer is disas-
trous to the Aletia, as the eggs dry up and fail to hatch; the worms
lose vitality, and are easily swept from the leaves, or they "web up"
prematurely and fail to transform. The moths are weakened by the
heat and lay fewer eggs, while the insect enemies greatly increase.
Often what is feared will be a caterpillar" year changes by reason of
a drought in July, as it did last year.
*Were it not for the insect foes of the cotton worm very little long
staple cotton would be raised in Florida, and I shall briefly enumerate
Wasps.-Several of these are savage assailants of the worm as it
nears the time of webbing up, biting out a piece from the side of the
torpid larva, it sips at the exuding juice, and flies away in search of
others, or it attacks the cocoon wherever exposed. The little "Gui-
nea wasp" is the most active in this good work.
Ants are extremely useful in disturbing the young worms; once
off the plant the larvae have little chance to regain it.
The Mantis (praying bugs), the mosquito hawks, spiders, robber
flies (Asilids) and Taclhna flies attack the worms. Several of our birds
are beneficial, and bats are especially valuable, as they pursue the early
I have my doubts if the use of London Purple and other spraying
mixtures will ever be available, as the plants are so irregular in growth,
but if a low-growing stock could be secured, then it could be treated
like the short staple cotton. If the Legislature would compel cotton
growers to destroy all old cotton stalks by January 15th of each year,
appointing responsible officers in each precinct to see that the law was
enforced, for even five years, I believe the cotton fly would disappear,
or lose its character as the cotton moth, unless it has an alternate food
plant, and that I have never found, nor heard of in Florida. This
plan seems.feasible, and, apparently, needs but a trial to insure suc-
THE BOLL WORM (Heliothis armigera).
This is really more destructive to the manifold crops of Florida
than the more noted cotton worm. It has not less than a dozen food
plants, attacks corn in the growing shoot, the tassel," the "silk,"
and the grains in all stages. It bores into the tomato, fruit or stem;
it devours the pods of peas, beans, cotton and okra, and does much
damage to young squashes, melons and cucumbers. It is especially
fond of young tobacco plants, and in the seed-bed, or when first trans-
planted, devours the buds and tender leaves.
The moth is a stout-bodied, dusky yellow insect, though the early
flying specimens, caught lately in March, are a pale orange-red. The
fore wings have a broad dark stripe near the outer margin, with a row
of small dark dots. The hind wings are lighter in shade, but also
margined. Its flight is quick and darting, beginning before sunset,
when it may be seen hovering, or fluttering softly over flowers. It ex-
pands one and one-half inches. The egg is dingy white, conical,
ribbed and cross-furrowed. The worms vary from pink to nearly
black in color, with a pale stripe each side of the body. It is the b ;d-
worm of most plants, feeds voraciously for three weeks, descends into
the ground, and in a week comes out a perfect insect. This worm
manages to ruin at least one-tenth of our corn, one-third of our toma-
toes and is the cause of most of the "shedding" of cotton, and, having
so many food-plants, it will be hard to exterminate.
Plowing fields deeply in December or January will destroy many
of the early moths. Building fires at night in the fields during Feb-
ruary or March will also do good. Setting traps-shallow vessels
filled with syrup and vinegar-around tobacco or cotton fields will save
much work later on.
In seed beds, the use of Pyrethrum powder is advised; dust freely
over the young plants every few days.
Planting of corn in cotton fields is often done, but unless the ears
are carefully noticed, and the worm killed, the corn serves as a breed-
ing ground for the first and second broods of the boll-worm, which
attacks the cotton afterward. The practice is a very questionable one.
THE COTTON STAINER (Dysdercus saturellus).
This pretty soldier, in his scarlet coat with its white cross on the
back, is one of our worst pests. It damages cotton in all stages, pierc-
ing the stalks, the young bolls, the soft seeds, and injuring the lint by
the stain from its excrement. It also has developed an appetite for the
luscious juice of our oranges, and recently has been seen on peaches.
The puncture on orange and peach soon causes decay, and the fruit
drops. It can be found almost any time during the winter in old
cotton bolls left on the dead stalks, evidently preferring these places,
thus emphasizing the necessity of clearing up old fields as soon as
possible after the crop is made. Sugar cane bagasse is another fav-
orite resort, and this could be used as a trap, first poisoning the cane
with London purple.
THE LEAFY-LEGGED PLANT-BUG (Leptoglossus phyllopus).
This is a slender reddish brown bug, with a cream-white stripe
across the wing covers, and the legs expanded into a leaf-like form.
The female is one-half inch in length, the male a trifle shorter. It
attacks any tender growth, especially the orange, lemon, peach, grape,
plum, persimmon and fig, puncturing the shoots with its strong beak,
suckingthe juices, and thus causing withering and death of the stems.
It is especially destructive to the sorghums, oats, millets and rice,often
piercing every grain while in its milk stage. It punctures young fruit,
beans, peas, melons and cucumbers, blighting the growth.
It hibernates as a perfect insect, and is easily found on early
blooms of the strawberry, plum or peach, usually paired.
The thistle (Cirslim) and sunflower are favorite resorts, and I
believe it would pay to grow the latter as a trap, spraying its disks
when crowded with the bugs. Emulsions of kerosene or London
purple are recommended for tender growths in the nursery or grove.
THE LOCUST COSSUS (Cossus [Xvleutes] Robinice, Peck).
The water oak, so favorably known in Florida as a shade tree, is
generally affected, and often destroyed by the larva of this thick-
bodied, large, gray and black moth. At least one-half of these trees
in the forest contain these boring worms, and in cities, for some
unknown reason the percentage is even greater. The burrows are
often from three to six feet in length, and half an inch in diameter.
If the direction of this hole be downward, it admits the rain, and
decay sets in at once ; if it be near the ground, the white ants (Termites)
or the fire ants (Solenopsis) finish the work of destruction. If, as fre-
quently happens, the hole extends around the tree, in the sap layer,
the tree dies as if "girdled," or if in small trees several burrows occur,
the trunk is weakened and any heavy wind breaks it easily. The moth
emerges in March, mates soon after and deposits rather large whitish
eggs in the crevices of the bark. These eggs are about one.tenth of an
inch long, with one black end. As soon as hatched, they begin to pen-
etrate the bark, and are easily detected by the "sawdust" and the
discolored bark. They attain their growth in about thirty months,
approach the surface and bore out, but close the hole slightly with
fragments of bark and silk, then retire a few inches, lining the burrow
with silk; then they transform. A month later it progresses till
the body of the chrysalis is half out, and this is left as a horny brown
shell as the moth escapes. The female expands nearly three inches;
the wings are shades of gray and black. She lays over 300 eggs, but
fortunately many are parasitized. As it is. this insect is a dangerous
one to our shade trees. Using whale-oil soap is perhaps the best
protection. This should be applied to the trunk thickly during April
and May, and any open holes plugged up as soon as possible.
THE ANISOTA WORM.
Another enemy to our shade trees, later in the season, is the larvae
of the Anisota senatoria, a black worm with eight yellow stripes the
whole of its inch-and-a-half of length; each ring is armed with sharp
prickles that are said to sting when handled, but this I had not noted.
These worms occur in great numbers, destroying the foliage,
checking the growth, and, in the case of young trees, actually killing
them outright. The worms transform in the ground, and emerge as
bright yellow moths, the fore wings with a wavy purple line across,
the hind wings with a straight purple band. It expands two and
There is but one generation each year, as it stays fully six months
in the cocoon. The worms are preyed upon by mosquito hawks and
wasps, and probably by various Tachina flies.
Trees, when attacked, can easily be saved by spraying with a
weak soapy emulsion, to which London purple has been added.
THE STINGING SLUG (Lagva opercularis).
This occurs on the oak, and eventually will be a pest to Japan
persimmons, devouring its leaves. The worm varies in color-white,
gray, yellow and red brown; it is covered with long silky hairs, be-
neath which are stinging stiff hairs, that are very irritating when they
penetrate the skin. It moves slowly, gliding along. The cocoon
looks like a fragment of a broken limb with an old bud. The moth is
brownish yellow, wings with dark margins, expands from one to one
and one-half inches. There are two broods a year. Trees should be
looked over in February and the cocoons destroyed, if possible, then
sprayed in June with some weak arsenical emulsion.
THE RASCAL LEAF-CRUMPLER (Acrobasis [Phyceta] nebulo).
This especially ruins the quince in Florida, but is beginning to
occur on the LeConte and other pears.
The moth is a light gray, with six or seven oblong dark spots on
upper wings, also four dark bands over the wing and a brown red spot
near the inner margin; hind wings lighter in shade, margin darker.
The worms are greenish brown, one-half inch long, and roll up
the leaves, forming a tube in which they live. They eat the tender
leaves, and stunt the tree, or cause it to drop its fruit.
Hand picking is generally the most certain, though spraying the
early leaves with a weak arsenical emulsion may be better.
THE TWIG GIRDLER (Oncidee'cs cingulates, Say).
In several sections of the State, the persimmon, orange, peach,
quince, and especially the LeConte pear has been badly damaged by
the singular action of this grayish chocolate-colored beetle. It is
about seven-tenths of an inch long, rather stout, somewhat speckled,
and the short hairs covering the body and wing cases are bluish gray.
In September and October it begins laying eggs. Beginning near the
tip of a limb it pierces below each bud, inserts an egg singly at each
place till a dozen eggs are deposited. It then cuts off the branch par-
tially by a deep groove, displaying great judgment in the work.
These limbs soon break off, fall to the ground and decay. The egg
hatches into a small white grub that spends a year in the limb, appear-
ing the next year as a beetle. The wood is cut very smoothly and one
would hardly suspect this shy, modest colored beetle of being the
author of the mischief.
The limbs that have fallen should be burned, thus destroying the
eggs and "sawyers."
THE FLEA BEETLE (Graptodera [Hallica] chalybea).
This has been quite prominent as a pest in vineyards, destroying
vines, especially the European and Northern varieties. They are
brilliant metallic blue, green or purplish, oblong oval beetles, about
one-fifth of an inch in length. They hop like fleas, but drop to the
ground and act as if dead when disturbed.
These beetles, both as larve and as perfect insects, are injurious,
eating the leaves of the plum, grape and peach. The eggs are
deposited in groups of five or six on the under side of the leaves,
and in March hatch out into smooth brown worms, with dark heads
and black legs.
These feed on the upper side of the leaves, soon reducing them to
mere skeletons. In five weeks they descend into the earth, to become
perfect beetles in another month. I am not certain but in this climate
there are two broods a year. For this species, and others of the same
family, that often destroy seed-beds of beets, cabbage, rutabaga and col-
lar as well as tobacco, melons, radishes, mustard and cucumbers, I
would recommend Pyrethrum powder, kerosened lime or sulphureted
lime sprinkled over the plants. For grapes, spray with weak emul-
sion of kerosene.
THE STRAWBERRY BEETLE (Haltica ignita).
This flea beetle has been the source of much trouble to straw-
berry growers, and has been sent me from various sections of the
State. It is a trifle larger than the grape flea beetle, and of a bronzy
yellowish-green color. Its habits are similar to the Chalybea, and
the same treatment for extermination recommended.
THE PROCRIS WORM (Procris [Harrisonia acoloitlhus] Americana).
This tiny norm, naturally, lives on the wild grape, or the Vir-
ginia creeper, but seems to prefer cultivated grapes, especially if exotic
or choice !
The moths are small, expanding barely an inch, bluish black with
a yellowish spot back of the head and a forked tail.
In April and May they can be found warm evenings hovering
over grape vines, and a few days later, troops of small transversely
striped, yellow and black worms appear, side by side, marching back-
ward, feeding on the under side of the leaf. At first they barely eat
the surface, but at last the entire leaf is skeletonized.
The worms are yellow, but tufts of black hairs on each ring gives
them the appearance of being striped. When grown, they hide under
bark or chips, spin a thin cocoon and transform into red-brown
chrysalides. In ten days they appear as perfect moths. There are
no doubt three broods in Florida, the last not leaving the cocoons till
They should be treated as recommended for the flea beetle.
I regret to be obliged to announce the arrival of a distinguished
foreigner, one who comes to cause cabbage growers all the trouble
possible, for this year sees the imported cabbage butterfly in North
Florida. This, the Pieris Ralpe, probably was imported from Europe in
1856 into North Canada, and has spread in every direction since. I
have not seen it in Florida till this spring. The fore wings are white,
with black tips and one or two black spots; hind wings, yellowish white;
body, black; expands nearly two inches. The worms are pale green,
with fine black dots; when full grown, one and a quarter inches long.
It is not content with eating the outside leaves of the cabbage, but bores
to the center of the head, and in the future, when this pest is estab-
lished, as it will be, cabbage eaters may well warn their cooks of the
danger of mixing meat and vegetables unawares. There are several
broods a year in the North. What they will accomplish here remains
to be seen.
Owing to the fact that this worm lives on and in a plant usedfor
food, one cannot use most of the insecticides that are of value in fnher
cases. Pyrethrum or salt, in powder or solution, seems most avail-
able over large areas; hand-picking is often the only remedy. Poi-
soned sweets will attract many of the butterflies, though not to be rec-
ommended if bees are around, and a smart boy, with a net, can cap-
ture most of the butterflies very early, and thus prevent the deposit of
eggs; and farmers should uproot and burn all old and worthless plants
of cabbages, collards, cauliflower and mustard, to prevent them acting
as breeding grounds, not only for this new pest, but the Plusia,
Aamestra, root-knot worm and the calico bug.
ORANGE SCALE INSECTS.
A large number of scale insects are found in our State, and, at
times, they are very troublesome. The waxy scale (Ceroplastis), long
scale, purple scale (Mytilaspis sp.), fie scale, white or oleander scale
(Aspidiofes sp.), chaff scale (Parlatoria), brown scale (Chionaspis),
broad scale and round scale (Lecanium sp.), and mealy bugs (Dacty-
lopius sp.) have been reported to me as occurring in groves. All
these insects are easily destroyed by spraying with some emulsion con-
taining arsenic, kerosene, carbolic acid, etc. See formulas. They
have so many insect enemies that, in many cases, it is enough to give
but one or two sprayings in July or October, just after the appearance
of new broods, when the insects are least protected.
It having been reported that the fluted scale" (Icerya) had
been found in the State led me to investigate. I found it was the
mealy bug that was the offender. Still, as there is a chance for this
dangerous intruder to creep in unrecognized, it is well to describe it
It is quite a large insect, usually dark orange, red or scarlet body,
with black legs, and a yellowish, mealy powder on the back. The egg-
sack is fluted or ridged lengthwise, creamy white, filled with eggs and
a cottony mass. Length of insect, including egg-sack, three-
eighths of an inch. The bright red and white contrast finely, and its
size precludes any chance of failure to notice it. It attacks all vege-
tation, trees, shrubs and vines, but is especially dangerous to the Cit-
I intend soon to introduce and colonize its antagonist, the Veda-
lia, in the hope that it will subsist and thrive on our soft scales (Leca-
nium, Kermes), etc., and thus pre-occupy, if possible, the ground.
A very large gray and green scale (Kermes) affects oaks and mag-
nolias, but it is usually kept in subjection by insect enemies, notably
Tachina and Ichneumon flies.
Nothing has been done in practical entomology that has shown
better results than the use of emulsions containing kerosene or insolu-
ble poison held in suspension, and their application to infected plants
in a fine spray by various atomizers and spray pumps. With one of
these machines an insecticide can be brought into contact with the in-
sect, and its feeding ground thoroughly impregnated with poison. It
is needful that the spray be very fine, and that it be applied with force
to reach every infected part, or the hiding places of insects. For cases
like infected buildings, as chicken houses, that are usually very diffi-
cult to keep clear of mites and tick-fleas, the spray of carbolized white-
wash, tobacco, kerosene, oil of tansy, etc., is easily applied.
I append a few formulas that have been tried and found to be val-
(i) Tobacco, I tb.; boiling water, 3 gallons; strain when cool.
Very effective when used as a spray against flea beetles,
lice, aphides (plant lice), and ticks.
(2) Quassia chips, I lb.; boiling water, 3 gallons. This very bitter
solution is good for prevention rather than cure. Apply as a
spray to rose bushes and to kill plant lice.
(3) Pyrethrum-i ounce of the "Buhach" powder added to 2 gal-
lons of cold water for cabbage, beets, tobacco, or any plant
used for food, as this is not poisonous.
(4) London purple, Paris green; actively poisonous. Use i lb. of
the poison to 200 gallons water or other solutions. Dissolve
a little flour paste in the water to make it sticky. Stir
frequently. Applied to trees, it is a sure cure for all insect
(5) Bordeaux mixture; this, while primarily a fungicide, has some
good qualities as an insecticide. It is prepared thus: i lb. sul-
phate copper, dissolve in i gallon hot water in one vessel; in
another, i lb. rock lime is slaked in i Y gallons cold water, and
when cool, pour into the copper solution and strain; add 2 gal-
lons water, and it is ready for use. (Cook).
(6) To this add London purple, i lb. to 200 gallons of the Bor-
deaux mixture. This sprayed over non-bearing grape vines
or tomato vines not in bloom, etc., will prevent rot and insect
life as well.
(7) Soap: r lb. resin soap to i gallon hot water. This used as a
spray is often a valuable remedy for the attacks of small and
soft insects. In fact it can be used to advantage for soft scales,
when they are few. It should be often used to get the best
(8) Water in which tar has been placed, acquires some value as an
II. EMULSIONS. (Soap is used as the basis of most of these.)
(i) Stronger emulsion of kerosene : 4 lbs. soap, dissolve in i gallon
hot (boiling) water; remove from the fire and add 2 gallons
kerosene while hot. Churn with a spray pump violently till
the oil is emulsified, or on standing a minute and no free oil
is visible, add 27 gallons cold water for use.
(2) Weaker emulsion (Cook) : lb. soap, dissolve in 2 gallons hot
water as before, but add only A gallon kerosene and dilute
till 8 gallons solution are made. Adding A pint spirits tur-
pentine to No. I increased its stability (Tracy). Allowing
even 40 gallons of water to be added to one gallon of the
emulsion and sprayed on tomato worms, it was very effective,
and did not injure the plant in the least.
(3) Emulsion I : Adding 2 ozs. of balsam of fir with the kerosene,
makes an emulsion that adheres better to the surface of leaves,
and is slightly superior to No. I for the armored scales.
(4) Using Emulsion 2, only substituting the same quantity crude
carbolic acid for kerosene, is especially valuable for oak and
(5) The same formula, using oil of tansy or sassafras I oz. in place
of the y gallon kerosene, is efficacious for roaches, mites,
ticks, bed.bugs and pests.
III. ARSENICAL, RESINOUS AND OTHER COMPOUNDS FOR SPRAYING.
(1) To Kerosene Emulsion No. i add i oz. London purple and
mix well. Highly recommended.
(2) Resin Compound: Caustic soda, i lb.; resin, 8 lbs.; to make
32 gallons compound. Dissolve the soda in one gallon boil-
ing water; take out half; add the resin slowly to the re-
mainder and boil, stirring rapidly, when dissolved, add slowly
the part taken out. Dilute till it will pass readily through a
thin cloth, which should be always done. Dilute before using
to 32 gallons. This alone is very valuable against most scales,
but the addition of 2 ozs. London purple makes assurance
doubly sure against even the dreaded Icerya.
(3) White arsenic, Y lb.; sal soda, Y lb; water, gallon; boil
till a solution is made, then dilute to a gallon. i qt. of this
to 50 gallons Resin Compound-use on peach, pear and plum
either after fruit is gathered, or just as bloom has fallen.
(1) While slaking i peck fresh lime, add i qt. kerosene,sift out lumps,
apply lightly to cucumbers, melons and tomatoes for beetles
(2) 50 lbs. land plaster, mix i pint crude carbolic acid; sprinkle
over leaves and vines for auhides and beetles.
(3) Pyrethrum: This, the powdered flowers of the pyrethrum, when
fresh, is especially valuable if sprinkled on infected leaves, or
in boxes, drawers, etc. House flies and mosquitos are easily
subdued by closing up the room tightly and slowly burning
in it a spoonful of the powder. It is slightly narcotic, but not
at all dangerous to human life. For infected cabbage, lettuce,
celery and the like, or tobacco, it is the best insecticide we
have, involving no danger if eaten.
(4) Tobacco: This insidious narcotic is valuable in the destruction
of plant-lice, mites, etc. Applied as a powder or by its fumes
it often is quite beneficial.
Bisulphide of carbon, like chloroform, is highly volatile but its
vapor, unlike that of chloroform, is very explosive. Bins and corn
cribs can be easily rid of ants, weevil, rats, mice, beetles, etc., if the
room b made air-tight, and occasionally filled from the top with the
vapor 'f bisulphide of carbon. This is the only way in which our
farmers ever will keep corn, peas, etc., from insect attacks. In a future
bulletin I hope to give complete directions to cheaply build a rat
and insect proof bin or crib, and how to manage the bisulphide. In
this way a terrible waste will be checked, and the thousands of dollars
now spent for "shipped corn" be saved the State.
INSECTS TO BE EXPECTED-The ICERYA (see description).
The Horn Fly.-This attacks cattle, and is a rather small and
active black fly that clusters on and around the horns of cattle, and in
Virginia has been the source of much trouble. It bites severely. It
has not been reported from any place in Florida yet, but is liable to
reach us at any time, and among our herds of semi-wild cattle will
prove a pest, as it will render them almost frantic and make it difficult
to manage them.
The "Buffalo" carpet or clothes moth, not reported as yet.
The White Cabbage Butterfly, Pieis Ropae, see description.
The Gypsy MAoth.-Now in Massachusetts, where measures are
progressing to stamp it out. If it reaches Florida its ravages will be
In conclusion, let me urge again that all who read this Bulletin
aid the Experiment Station and themselves, first, in obtaining a col-
lection of insects, especially the noxious ones, in every stage of their
existence. Secondly, in learning of the habits of all insects found
within the State, good, bad or indifferent; write up your observations
when you send the insects, giving date of capture, place found, plant
infested, damages done, and if insecticides are used, give kind and
method of using.
Send insects in small tin box; if alive, send in the box specimens
of the food plant. Never send anything in a paper box, it is inva-
riably crushed in the mails. Address, plainly, "Entomologist, Florida
Experiment Station, Lake City, Fla.," and if answer is required, wait
with patience. In some cases, the specimens must be sent to a spe-
cialist for study, there being no named collection as yet at the College
or Station, requires this procedure.