Melittia cucurbitae

The squash vine borer has wrecked havoc on all things squash. Pumpkins? Annihilated. Zucchini? Total destruction. Crookneck squash? Decimated.


Borer eggs I found on the underneath of a pumpkin leaf.


The destroyer. The borer larvae. I was lucky to find one. I searched most of the vines and was coming up empty until I spotted this one. His next step would be to burrow in the ground, spinning a cocoon and stay there until next spring…


Empty cocoons. This was just a small sample size I found.


I spotted this adult moth hanging out on a pumpkin leaf. It lived long enough for me to take its photo and then I killed it.


An obvious sign that I’ve got problems.


The carnage that was left behind. My Big Max and Cinderella pumpkins complete goners.

I’ve bagged up the dead plants and got rid of them. In the process I happened upon a colony of squash bugs. A totally different bug all together. AAAARRRRGGGGHHHH!!!!

I’ll be taking a next year off from growing anything squash and let the life cycle die down a bit. I’ve had issues in the past, but nothing this bad.

Comments 3

  1. misti wrote:

    I have not been pleased with summer season squash this year. Round two seems to be doing ok—-but we need more daily rain so I don’t have to water to keep it from shriveling.

    Posted 25 Jul 2012 at 12:50 pm
  2. Moosie wrote:

    Wowser! That really sucks. Makes me reconsider going to get those raised planters at Marshall Grain. Forget trying to grow anything.

    Posted 26 Jul 2012 at 3:33 pm
  3. Ben Phillips wrote:

    Hello,
    I am working on an Extension article and bulletin about vine borer for Michigan. Could I use and give you credit for the image of the handful of pupal casings?

    Thanks for your time,
    Ben Phillips

    Posted 07 Apr 2015 at 4:15 pm

Trackbacks & Pingbacks 1

  1. From Ask A True Blue Dad: What is this and how can I kill it? - True Blue Dads on 27 Aug 2017 at 5:39 pm

    […] of cucumber/squash pests and larva. I was able to determine that those are the pupa of the Squash Vine Borer. These little buggers are a little difficult to control if not caught early as well as having only […]

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