Gall wasp

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Gall wasps (cynipidae), or gall flies, are small insects in the order hymenoptera, which also contains ants. They are named for the hard sacs they form when they lay eggs on the roots and branches of some plants, these contain the larvae of the gall wasp, enclosed in little chambers.

The citrus gall wasp (eurytoma frills), is the bane of farmers and home growers in its native Australia. Although the larvae do not harm the tree per se, the galls are unsightly and warp the stems and branches, and with spreading can weaken and distort the tree. We do not yet understand exactly how the galls are formed. The only thing that can really be done is to cut off the branch or stem with the offending protuberance.

References

  • Gardening Australia television program, ABC network, broadcast 29th September 2007.
  • My garden website: [[1]]