Every year, The Royal Horticultural Society names the top 10 problematic insects and other pests in the UK, based on the number of enquiries received by RHS members. In 2009, the red lily beetle was number 8. The lily beetle is becoming an increasing problem in the UK to amateur gardeners and botanical gardens alike, with the mean number of enquiries to the RHS rising from 4 per year in 1967 to 101 per year in 2006.

The small adult red lily beetles are characterized by their bright red body with a black head, black antennae, black legs and black underparts. They are approximately 6-8mm in length. Adults can completely defoliate a lily plant in just a few days with weakened plants left susceptible to diseases such as lily grey mould. As the pest continues increase in range, the damage the beetle causes is only going to increase.

This website was created as a part of my third year university project with the aim of helping gardeners, insect enthusiasts and those just curious about the biology of the red lily beetle, its spreading distribution and ways of controlling it by manual, cultural and chemical methods.

 

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Produced by Jacky Truong (Newcastle University) Contact: jacky.truong@ncl.ac.uk