Smallholders Insurance from Greenlands

Author Topic: Cherry Tree Leaf Eater?  (Read 3133 times)


  • Joined Jul 2012
  • Kent
  • HesterF
Cherry Tree Leaf Eater?
« on: May 20, 2015, 11:58:18 am »
No photo at the moment but can try and get one later. I've got 15 young cherry trees in an orchard surrounded by high hedges (the bees live in there too). The all had huge amounts of blossom on this year but looking at them, very little fruit has formed and now something is eating the leaves. Starting from the centre of each tree virtually all the leaves have been eaten up towards the tip of the branches where some remain on each. They look a little bit like leaf-cutter ant semicircles in places but we don't have those here, do we? The only other insect life I could find on them was one lot of aphids and a few ants (tending them and on other trees). Any idea what would be doing the damage? The only thing I could think was birds because they could sit in the middle and eat but no idea why they'd be eating leaves?




  • Joined Jul 2011
Re: Cherry Tree Leaf Eater?
« Reply #1 on: May 20, 2015, 01:39:41 pm »
last 2 years something ate the leaves on my sweet chestnut and kentish cob... looked like fine french lace with just ribs when they finished. I sprayed last year and that knocked whatever back after losing one young kentish cob the year before. Dunno what they were so no help.. but the end result looked just like the flea beetle damage on my turnips. I'd guess it's some sort of beetle 'cos i see similar effects on some of the broadleaf stuff growing in my mixed meadows. Doesn't attack the wild welsh hazel though.

Mad Goatwoman of Madeley

  • Joined Sep 2011
  • Telford
Re: Cherry Tree Leaf Eater?
« Reply #2 on: May 21, 2015, 12:31:19 am »
Flaming goats keep getting my cherry tree.


  • Joined Jul 2012
  • Kent
  • HesterF
Re: Cherry Tree Leaf Eater?
« Reply #3 on: May 22, 2015, 12:37:43 am »
Agrii man thinks pigeons. We do have a lot around this year so it wouldn't be so surprising. Goodness only knows how many more pests I can manage to encourage - poultry runs crawling in rats, eggs being eaten by crows, veg being eaten by slugs and now fruit being eaten by pigeons.

Mad Goatwoman of Madeley

  • Joined Sep 2011
  • Telford
Re: Cherry Tree Leaf Eater?
« Reply #4 on: May 26, 2015, 01:03:06 am »
We have a lot of pigeons round here - wood pigeons and homing pigeons - but I haven't noticed any leaf damage (apart from the goat damage). What I do have though is a magpie who hangs upside down on the bird feeder to eat the suet filled coconut shell. Grrr.

Marches Farmer

  • Joined Dec 2012
  • Herefordshire
Re: Cherry Tree Leaf Eater?
« Reply #5 on: June 08, 2015, 03:10:41 pm »
Tried using a plastic crow in my veg. garden this year, moving it twice a day.  It's kept the pigeons off the brassicas so far - nothing likes crows!

Mad Goatwoman of Madeley

  • Joined Sep 2011
  • Telford
Re: Cherry Tree Leaf Eater?
« Reply #6 on: June 09, 2015, 12:45:55 am »
Probably not the best thing to have on my bird feeder though.


  • Joined Dec 2013
  • Near Llandeilo
    • Angela French Graphite Artist
    • Facebook
Re: Cherry Tree Leaf Eater?
« Reply #7 on: June 10, 2015, 03:39:55 pm »
The semi circles are probably leaf cutter bees, but they won't be the ones completely decimating them. Wood pigeons will eat leaves, they are certainly partial to young leaves and buds on trees and hedges, but I suspect a number of culprits, bugs and birds, rather than just one for that number of trees and amount of damage. If you can stretch to it for 15 trees (I don't know how big they are and it depends where you get it from) you could consider a pyrethrum based spray for the bug pests (I'm not a fan of any spray, but this one is at least certified for organic use, based on naturally occurring compounds and safe on foodstuffs up to one day before harvest) and then something to scare the birds too. I feel for you, it's heart breaking to see all of your hard work going to serve as the local all you can eat buffet for the local pests.


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