stalk borer late instar MER copy.jpg

Stalk borer


  • Adult: Moth with a wingspan of just over 1" and forewings that are gray or brown with small white spots.
  • Larvae: Brown worms with white stripes down the body and a purple band around the middle of the body.
  • Eggs: Globular, ridged and laid in the creases of rolled or folded leaves. 

Timing of damage: VE to V12

Type of damage: Irregular holes in leaves. Larvae tunnel into the stalk, causing wilting and plant death.

Scouting: Check 20 plants in five separate locations, and pay close attention to field borders.

Economic threshold: There is no established threshold, but treatment is often more effective if applied when the larvae are young and before they have migrated.

Similar Pests

Ask an Agronomist