Japanese beetle attack Iowa plants - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Japanese beetle attack Iowa plants

COUNCIL BLUFFS, Iowa (AP) -- The Japanese beetle is appearing in Iowa early this year, targeting trees and plants.

An Iowa State University bug expert, Ken Holscher, says the beetle has worked its way into southwest Iowa and is now documented in 37 counties in the state since 1994.

He says this year appears to be the worst in Iowa for Japanese beetles.

The beetle began emerging along the east coast but has gradually drifted west across the country.

Adult Japanese Beetles feed on more than 300 kinds of trees and plants, targeting foliage, fruits and flowers.

Holscher says there isn't one method of preventing the spread of the beetle that's effective but he says he keeps a bucket of soapy water nearby and knocks as many of them as he can into the bucket, where they die a quick death.

Holscher says the best defense against the Japanese beetle is to learn what it likes and doesn't like and plant accordingly.

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