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Japanese Beetles ( Popillia japonica )

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  • Japanese Beetles ( Popillia japonica )

    Japanese Beetles are a constant problem in the Northeast and I am getting tired of attempting to rid of them on my clients properties.
    In real life, you never do get rid of them here, but you can control the damage and make a profit doing so.

    A little knowledge about the critters:
    Japanese Beetles feed on most plant species. The adults (and hungry) Beetles are with us from the beginning of June until October. They love sunny days and are active mainly during the daytime. Females only live for about 40 days but like to lay eggs under your lawn just before they die. Even if you attempt to treat your own lawn for them, they will find your home. In the spring the grubs move up and mature, ready to eat all the leaves off your trees and plants.

    Spraying packages:
    In late May or early June we should start trying to contain these hungry buggers and respray every ten days until the problem is under control. Malathion works best here, some use Carbaryl which is the same. The same chemical will treat most other pests as well.

    This adds up to 12 sprayings over the active months from June until October. This also adds up to profit.
    Malathion is very cheap and quick to apply if you have a good sprayer. I spend about an hour at each home and give the plant material a nice spraying. Thats $65 per hour plus the additional cost of material which normally is under $10 per treatment. Thats $900 per season and if you have 25 customers that want their plants to look nice all season it equals $22,500 in gross profit. We are pretty established here so you can come way down on the price and still make some nice money.
    Be sure to wear a respirator for your safety and let the customer know that you are going to be spraying.

    Any comments on how else to deal with the Japanese Beetle would be appreciated.

  • #2
    What kind of license do you need to perform this?
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    • #3
      Information can be obtained from your States Dept of Agriculture.

      I had my license expire about 10 years ago and had to re-apply.
      The rules were not enforced then, but recently there is said to be a crack down in our area.

      Commercial pesticide applicators in Pennsylvania are required to hold a pesticide license issued by the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture. Under that license, the applicator must carry certification in the proper category. For example, a lawn care applicator must have Category 07 [Lawn & Turf] on his or her license, while a technician spraying trees and shrubs must have Category 06 [Ornamental & Shade Tree]. You must pass 2 tests which are rather easy in order to apply for the license. In addition to paying an annual license fee, you must complete pesticide update training every 3 years.


      • #4
        Very interesting.

        What kind of ways have you been marketing this service?
        - Subscribe to my Lawn Care Marketing Blog Feed and get daily tips sent to you. Free!
        Download your Free trial of Gopher Lawn Care Software.


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