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Oxfordshire, United Kingdom Gb

I have a formerly nicely shaped box plant that has got some kind of blight. I assume I should destroy it and start again? Will I need to treat the soil round about in case anything has dropped into it that could affect other plants.

On plant Box

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Have the leaves been chewed, or is there webbing between the leaves or have the leaves remained on but died? It's a bit difficult to comment without a close-up.

21 May, 2022


Originally it just looked a bit blighted and dead but looking at it again today it is covered in green and black caterpillars, a lot of the stems are stripped and it also has webbing. I've added some more pictures to the original one I put up

21 May, 2022


That's better, so pick off all the catapillars and webbing that you can and then spray with something like Ultimate Bug Killer. If that does the trick then give it a feed with Q4 or similar fertiliser.

21 May, 2022


Thanks so much. I'll try.
Any need to treat the soil beneath?

21 May, 2022


they are the caterpillars of the box tree moth.
Pick off as many as you can find and if you have a bird table offer them up on there. Birds will be very grateful at this time of year.

nothing needs doing to the soil as the eggs are laid on the underside of the leaves.

read the RHS link

if you can find the time to fill in their survey request it would be helpful.

22 May, 2022


Also, next spring, you might want to plant a pot of sweet alyssum and Viola tricolor nearby. Those flowers attract gnat-sized stingless wasps, which lay their eggs in caterpillars, eating them from within. Whether or not they attract the right kind of wasp for box tree moth is chancy, but the other species will probably benefit the rest of the garden.

23 May, 2022


Thanks for all your advice everyone. I'll try these remedies and see if they works. I see a number of sites also recommend growing different plants to box if it can't be controlled.

24 May, 2022

How do I say thanks?

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