Earlier in spring as the leaves were growing I spotted the beetles easily on the leaves and also bite marks. So I sprayed it with the relevant insecticide. This week when I was reading up on the red lily beetles, I learned that if you look on the underside of the leaves you can see the black excrement left by them….lovely! Even more frustrating is the fact that larvae will often be completely hidden under their
own wet excrement!
It seems that getting in early with the pest control certainly helped as the flower buds are healthy and beginning to bloom. The problem, if you don’t control the beetles, is that they not only spoil the appearance of the plant, but the bulbs can then end up being underdeveloped. This means the following years plant may not bloom. So next year if I don’t get any flowers, I will know I didn’t do enough!
A tip I learned a few years ago is to cut the stamen off if you use them as cut flowers indoors. The stamen leave dark stains on whatever they touch and are a real nuisance to remove.
With their large flower heads and nice tall height, they are beautiful statement features in any garden big or small!