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Boxelder Bug Control

Boxelder Bugs (leptocoris trivittatus) are a common bug named for the tree they love, the Boxelder maple (Acer negundo). They feed on the Boxelder tree as well as plum, ash and cherry trees.

Boxelder Bug

They become an annoying household pest in the fall as they scurry and swarm to find overwinter homes.  You will find them clustering on the siding of your home, typically on the south side. Boxelder bugs like smooth light colored surfaces just like your siding. Other hibernating places they might find would be behind loose bark of tree gaps, in window sills, loose siding and anywhere else they can find that they can crawl into.

Control: A contact insecticide like Zeps 'Bug Max' will work effectively; as well as Bonide's Beetle Killer that hooks up to your hose. Always make sure you test spray a small are to make sure the product you are spraying does not stain your
stucco or siding.

If you’re looking for kinder/gentler controls try these tips:

  • Employ a building maintenance plan. Seal up cracks with a good silicone sealer. Reattach any loose siding; replace bent window sills and screens. Make sure exterior doors close tightly and inspect all weather stripping. This will stop them actually penetrating your home.
  • Bonide Eight
    At Gertens we also carry several earth friendly options - one being 'Eco Smart' organic insect killer. It kills and repels over 100 different insects and bugs including Boxelder beetle. Although it’s labeled non-staining as with all products, spray an inconspicuous test area of siding and wait two hours to test it out first. If you don't notice any changes in siding appearance you can go ahead and spray. Another product that is eco-friendly would be Bonide Eight.