Adult -This light-brown to ash-gray beetle has elbowed antennae, which arise from its snout, and a white band on the side of each wing cover. About 7 to 9 mm long, this beetle is unusual not only because males of this species have never been found but also because the adults cannot fly.
Egg -An egg mass is composed of 10 to 60 smooth, paleyellow eggs. Each egg is about 1 mm long and oval to elliptical.
Larva -The legless, slightly curved larva has a white body with a pale, almost white, head. When fully grown, it is approximately 9.5 mm long. .
Host Plants -In addition to feeding upon many fruit trees and vegetable crops, the adult and larva of this beetle attack an array of ornamental trees and flowering plants. Some economically important hosts of the adult include apple apricot, azalea, begonia, blackberry, gardenia, hibiscus, hydrangea, lily, oak, peach, pear, persimmon, plum, prune, raspberry, rose, and strawberry. The larva feeds primarily on the roots of blackberry, loganberry, raspberry, rose, and strawberry.
Damage -Fuller rose beetles feed on the leaves of host plants, leaving ragged or scalloped edges. They do little serious damage except to the plants' appearance. The larvae, though serious root pests of some plants, do not infest most shrubs.
Life History -For the most part, Fuller rose beetles overwinter as larvae in the soil, though a few adults have been known to survive the winter. Pupation occurs in spring within 10 cm of the soil surface. Adults first appear in July and continue to emerge through November. The adults, which are all females, produce eggs parthenogenetically and deposit them in small masses around the base of the plant or under the calyx of the fruit. Protected with a white, spongy material, the eggs hatch approximately 3 weeks later. The newly hatched larvae work their way down into the soil to feed on the roots. Throughout the growing season, the larvae may be found 8 to 61 cm underground. Only one generation occurs each year.
Fuller rose beetles seldom cause real damage to the shrubs, though the aesthetic value of infested plants may be reduced. In the event of excessive foliar damage, effective pesticides are available. For specific chemical controls, see the current state extension service recommendations.
Return to AG-189 Table of Contents