The Cankerworms Are Coming

cankerworm crawling on fabric

It’s officially Spring, and that means insects are getting ready to be everywhere. After lying dormant throughout the winter, many insects (including some not-so-beneficial ones) are ready to stretch their legs in the sunshine…and maybe wreak a little havoc on your trees and shrubs. One insect, in particular, you should be looking out for is the Cankerworm.

What Are Cankerworms?

You may have seen them around your property without even realizing it (but we hope not). A Cankerworm, like many other insects, emerge as an inchworm or caterpillar in the springtime, and after spending a winter season being cooped up, they’re ready to break out of their eggs and eat.

Hungry, Hungry Cankerworms

These little guys are very hungry by the time Spring comes around, and the first thing they go for is the leaves of your trees! Since females climb up the trunk of the tree to lay their eggs, Cankerworms break out from those eggs right into the canopy, where most of a tree’s foliage is found. It’s essentially an all-you-can-eat buffet, and these worms stuff their faces; they are able to skeletonize whole canopies of trees, sometimes in a matter of days.

Cankerworms Can Damage Your Trees

Trees use their foliage in photosynthesis, the process of converting sunlight into “food”. Without their leaves, trees are unable to make the nutrients needed for survival. So, if Cankerworms are eating all the leaves out of a tree’s canopy, the tree will struggle to get resources it needs to stay strong, leaving it weak and susceptible to other insect attacks or diseases; should an insect or disease attack the tree’s system while weak, the tree could die.

At Schneider Tree Care, we’re all about proactive care, as well as keeping your trees and shrubs as healthy as possible. Call our office at 864-244-3088 to schedule an appointment with an Arborist today to make sure your trees are well cared for this Spring season.