The Washington State Department of Agriculture is asking home gardeners to keep an eye out for Japanese Beetles which recently infested Oregon, particularly around Portland.


Karla Salp with WSDA said they do find a few every year, but nothing over concerning, but it’s important to be in front of any potential invasion.


“Japanese beetles in particular like flowers and roses. They’re very attracted to that floral scent. They’ll eat not only the pedals of the flower but the foliage as well. It’s a very devastating pest that can completely defoliate and deflower over 300 different types of plants.”


Our nasty winter won’t necessarily get rid of them either because they can hibernate as grubs in the ground protected, though that can make them a target of birds and raccoons who will dig up your yard.


Salp said it’s critical to be careful when purchasing plants for your garden.


“When you’re visiting a nursery, wherever that nursery is, always examine those plants very carefully before you purchase them to make sure, just as another safeguard, that you’re not bringing any pests back to your home.”


You can find out more about Japanese beetles on the WSDA blog page, and if you see a beetle, make sure to contact WSDA.


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