The Gall Midge, a Threat to Hibiscus and Other Plants

Dropped blooms with larvae at end of pointer. Proper disposal of infested blooms is important in stopping the cycle.

Larva exiting bloom on its way to the soil to pupate.



A magnified view of the larva.
Another magnified view of the stage that enters the soil.

A magnified view of the adult that emerges from the soil.

The gall midge is a small fly that lays it eggs in flower buds. When the eggs hatch, tiny worm-like larvae emerge that damage the young bud, causing it to fall to the ground. The larvae then leave the bud and enter the ground to pupate and reappear as flies in about 3 weeks. Growers are successfully combatting the midge by using insecticides like Orthene and Cygon to kill them when they are in the bud and granular products Dursban and Diazinon or one of the replacement products for these two like Triazicide to kill them in the ground. Products containing imidacloprid are also extremely useful.


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