Not to be confused with Gypsy Moth (which is extremely prevalent in Ontario this year), Box tree moth is a new pest in Ontario that is primarily found on boxwood plants (not in trees). Also, Box Tree Moth has only been detected in and around southern Etobicoke. Home and property owners should take a minute to learn the differences between these two pests, and then report any sightings of only box tree moth using one of two methods below (Step 2).
Box tree moth vs. Gypsy mothBox tree moth is primarily found on shrubs, not trees. Boxwoods have green leaves and are typically used as hedges.
Box tree moth vs. Gypsy mothThe Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) provides Pest Identification Cards that show what each moth looks like.
Step 1: DetectExamine all boxwood plants for signs of chewed leaves, larvae, webbing and frass. Larvae feed from May to September.
Step 2: Report a sightingAll findings of box tree moth should be reported to officials who are tracking the pest.
Reports from within the core zone (Toronto, Brampton, Mississauga, Vaughan, Richmond Hill and Markham):
Contact Meghan Greaves at 1-800-265-5656 or 905-875-1805 (ext. 2301)
or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Sightings from outside the areas listed above (see map):
Contact the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) using the link https://www.inspection.gc.ca/about-cfia/contact-us/contact-cfia-online/eng/1299860523723/1299860643049
Step 3: Take actionIf you have the pest there is a biological control spray called Dipel that is registered for control of Box Tree moth. The active ingredient of the spray is safe to humans and pets and is the same as the one in BTK caterpillar killer sold at most retail garden centres. The same active ingredient is used by the City of Toronto to control gypsy moth. To kill the larvae, sprays need to be applied when larvae are feeding on leaves, typically from mid-May to mid-June and from mid-July to mid-August and early September.
If you wish to hire a professional, we suggest you contact one of these licensed contractors to spray your boxwoods:
- Bruce Tree Expert Company Ltd, (416) 252-8769, email@example.com
- LawnSavers Plant Health Care, (416) 707-9994, firstname.lastname@example.org
- TruGreen https://www.trugreen.com, (905) 290-1871
More informationwww.inspection.gc.ca and LandscapeOntario.com/tag/box tree moth
If you have any questions, please contact Meghan at:
Toll Free: 1-800-265-5656 ext. 2301