5. Colorado potato beetle (Leptinotarsa decemlineata)
Adults: yellow-orange beetles with 10 black stripes on wing covers. Larvae: orange, hump-backed grubs with black spots along sides. Eggs: yellow ovals, laid in upright clusters.
Host/Range: Potatoes, tomatoes, eggplant, petunias. Found throughout North America.
Damage: Beetles defoliate plants, reducing yields or killing young plants.
Control: Apply floating row covers; use deep straw mulches; hand pick; attract native parasites and predators; spray with Beauveria bassiana or spinosad; spray with neem.
6. Mexican bean beetle (Epilachna varivestris)
Adults: oval, yellow-brown, 1⁄4-inch beetles with 16 black spots on wing covers. Larvae: fat, dark yellow grubs with long, branched spines.
Host/Range: Cowpeas, lima beans, snap beans, soybeans. Found in most states east of the Mississippi River; also parts of Arizona, Colorado, Nebraska, Texas, Utah.
Damage: Adults and larvae chew on leaves from beneath, leaving characteristic lacy appearance; plants defoliated and killed.
Control: Apply floating row covers; plant bush beans early; hand pick; plant soybean trap crop; put out lures to draw spined soldier bugs (predators) to your yard. Spray Beauveria bassiana, insecticidal soap, or neem.