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Clematis saw fly and greenfly

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Aidan3 View Drop Down

Joined: 16 Nov 2008
Location: Leeds, England
Posts: 85
  Quote Aidan3 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Topic: Clematis saw fly and greenfly
    Posted: 10 Jun 2009 at 10:08pm
Don't know about all of you, but I've been plagued by clematis saw fly and greenfly this year, particularly in my greenhouse. The saw fly likes all my clematis of the meclatis species and has a particular liking for Bells of Emei Shan, which has been decimated. I have spent ages unfurling the leaves and pulling out little green caterpillers, the pesky varmints.
Has anyone else experienced this and if so do you have any tips for dealing with these critters?
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Nunn00123 View Drop Down
Senior Member
Senior Member

Joined: 15 Dec 2007
Posts: 139
  Quote Nunn00123 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 15 Jun 2009 at 10:21am
Hi Aidan,
It is possible that you do not have a problem with clematis sawfly, as I dont think it has reached our shores yet. It is a problem on Atragenes in Sweden, where it burrows into the stems of the clematis.
I have had a similar pest, which folds the leaves and sticks the edges together with a silk type web material. The sawfly larvae has at least 7 pairs of prolegs whereas a moth or butterfly catapillar has only three, but I have never bothered to count them. I have found this pest on several of my ornamental plants, in the greenhouse and garden, not just on clematis. I deal with the problem initially by just squashing the folded leaf between finger and thumb (much less fiddley than opening leaves) but it is important in the greenhouse to keep on top of any pests and to spray with a systemic insecticide as soon as a problem is noticed, but repeat sprayings may be required to keep control of some pests.
In the garden I rarely take any action to control pests, other than snails lilly beetle and greenfly, finding it best to give the natural predators a chance, but in the greenhouse an organic regime is just about impossible, prefering to squash and spray.
Best of luck
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