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 Lilium Pests - June Beetle


Digging in your lily garden, you may unearth a large, white grub‑like insect. This is the larva of the June beetle that is feeding upon the roots of the plants and sometimes cleans the roots right off to the basal plate.

June beetles belong to the family Melolonthidae.  The June beetles are well known to most of us because in early summer they are attracted to lights at night. The common June beetle is light reddish­ brown in color with the undersurface of the body covered with fine light‑colored hairs.

The larva, commonly known as the white grub, feeds upon the roots of plants, and, at times, may do considerable damage to field crops and upon the leaves when in the adult stage. The female June beetle deposits her eggs in the soil. The larvae feed upon the roots of plants and, when they are full grown, which usually takes two years, they enter a pupa stage beneath the surface of the ground, in which stage they remain throughout the long winter months. With the return of warm weather in early summer the adult beetles emerge, males & females deposit their eggs and so the life cycle is completed.

Certain species of white grubs are particularly fond of grass roots and it is not an uncommon experience to find acres of grassland completely destroyed due to the attack of these fat, white larvae.