Lily leaf beetle larvae and adult beetle

Lily leaf beetle larvae, left, and the beetle form.

Gardeners in the Northeast are getting to know the lily leaf beetle, a destructive pest that attacks Asiatic and Oriental lilies — as well as similar species. One of the best hopes for control at this point is a parasitic insect, which has been released in Rhode Island, Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Maine.

To test the effectiveness of the releases, the University of Rhode Island is examining lily beetle larvae, looking for the presence of the parasitic insect. If you live in New York or New England, you can send in a sample of your larvae. With help from gardeners throughout the region, researchers will be able to collect the information they need to learn how to control the beetle. Learn how you can participate.

For more information, read our article, Controlling Lily Leaf Beetles.