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Attack of fruit borer

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Attack of Fruit Borer: How to Identify and Control the Menace

Fruit borers are one of the most common pests that attack and destroy crops of fruits and vegetables. They are relatively small moths that lay eggs on the surface of fruit and vegetables, which then hatch into larvae that bore into the fruit and feed on it from the inside. Once the larvae are done feeding, they exit the fruit with a small hole, often leaving behind a messy trail of frass (insect poop). Here’s what you need to know about fruit borers, how to identify them, and how to control their spread to protect your crops.


Fruit borers are small moths that have a wingspan of about 1 inch. They are typically brown or gray with intricate, light-colored patterns on their wings. The adult moths are not the culprits behind the damage to fruits and vegetables. Instead, it is the larvae that are responsible for the harm. The larvae are usually white or pinkish with small, dark heads. They are about 0.5 inches long and burrow into the fruit, leaving small holes behind as they puncture through the skin.

Control methods

It’s crucial to control the spread of fruit borers to protect your crops from permanent damage. Here are some methods you can use.

1. Spot-check your plants: Regularly inspect your crops to identify the early signs of an infestation. Look for holes in the fruit, frass near the stem, and discolored or wilting fruit.

2. Physical control: If you spot an infested fruit, remove it from the plant and dispose of it outside your crop area. Pruning can also be done to remove branches with infested fruit.

3. Chemical control: Use approved insecticides to target the larvae before they can do much damage. Make sure you apply the pesticide following its instructions, and always wear protective clothing.

4. Non-chemical control methods: You can also use natural methods like pheromone traps, which lure the male fruit borers away from the crop.


As the saying goes, prevention is better than cure. Here are some preventive measures that you can take to avoid a fruit borer infestation:

1. Keep your crop area clean and free from weeds, debris, and other organic matter that may attract fruit borers.

2. Use crop rotation to avoid planting the same crops in the same area year after year.

3. Cover your fruit and vegetable plants with a mesh or netting to keep the adult fruit borers from laying their eggs on your crops.

4. Plant companion crops that repel fruit borers, such as garlic or onions.

In conclusion, fruit borers can wreak havoc on your crops if left unchecked. Fortunately, there are several ways to control their spread and, ultimately, avoid an infestation altogether. By following the prevention and control methods mentioned above, you can protect your crops and ensure a bountiful harvest.

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