Insect Pests Common in Manitoba

Follow this guide to help figure out what the insect on your plant is. Use the description and damage columns to guide you through as they relate to what you are seeing. Once you have found a match check out the control column to see how you can control and prevent the pest from coming back.

If you are still unsure after reviewing this (maybe the damage is not as obvious or it's not on our list), come to Lacoste Garden Centre with a sample in a closed bag to ask one of our experts.


DESCRIPTION         DAMAGE        CONTROL          


 Wide range of colour from light or dark green to red or black with pear-shaped small bodies  Yellowed and distorted leaves, stunted shoot growth. Sticky substance (honeydew) excreted onto leaves below.

 Spray with high pressure stream of water, hitting underside of leaves. Insecticidal soap can also be used


 Wormlike larva of a butterfly  Holes in leaves or completely eaten. Some species roll the leaf around themselves before eating it.  Hand picking (as caterpillars are often large enough for this) or using BTK
Chinch Bug  Gray-black bodies with fine hairs, white wings and red legs  Scattered patches of wilted grass. Similar to drought conditions.  The best control of chinch bug is prevention. A well cared-for lawn that has been watered and fertilized properly will help keep these pests away
Flea Beetle  Small black or tan beetles with prominent legs  Eat shallow and irregular-shaped holes in foliage and stems, resulting in a "shot hole" appearance.  Keep weeds away from your plants and surround your garden with "trap crops" like Queen Anne's Lace, dill, and parsely.
Fungus Gnats  Small, slender, grayish-black flies  Rarely damage plants, more considered a nuisance. Large numbers of larva in the soil however, can cause root problems.  Allow soil to dry between waterings. Gnats thrive in moist soil conditions
Leaf Miner  Rarely recognized: often identified by damage on leaf  Generally more of an aesthetic concern than the health of the plant. Burrow white or light green curving tunnels under the leaf surface.  Cutting off leaves showing miners is the best control for these pests
Lily Beetle  Ladybug-sized beetle that is solid red with black head, underside, and legs. Larva laid in black "goo" (excrement) on underside of leaves  Chewed leaves on lilies  Picking beetles off the leaves of your lilies every day is the best control method. Also making sure to scrape off the larvae from the underside of the leaves
Mealybug  Small, white, and oval-shaped. Type of scale insect  Suck sap out of plant, weakening it and causing leaf drop. Sticky "honeydew" excreted.  For a smaller infestation use a strong stream of water to blast them off plants. For a larger infestation, dishsoap and water can be mixed and sprayed onto the plant.
Slugs  Slimy with tentacled heads. Vary in colour from whitish yellow to black, generally marked with darker shades. 1/4"-10" in length  Large gaping holes in leaves, torn foliage  Hand-pick slugs off your plants, set out bowls of beer as traps, or use diatomaceaous earth in the soil around plants
Spider Mite  Very small and difficult to see round insects. Often recognized by their fine webs on leaves  Spotting and yellowing of leaves, leaf loss.  Spray plants with high pressure stream of water and/or use insecticidal soap
Thrip  Tiny, slender, and yellow to brown in colour with fringed wings  Leaves appeared dried and brown or mottled silver.  Spray with water and/or insecticidal soap
Whitefly  Small insects with white waxy powder-covered bodies and wings  Yellowing, drying, or loss of leaves. Also excrete "honeydew".  Nicotiana is a great trap crop to use to trap whitefly. Also, insecticidal soap can help remove them from your plants.


There are more pests beyond this list, so be sure to check with an expert before taking control action.