08-10-2008, 01:59 PM
A client of mine showed me that there was a lot of fly activity after these shrubs "flowered" which was a first for her. After this flies gathered to all the new growth they became attached to the underside and remain to this day. this was about a week -10 days ago. Has anyone ever seen this type of "attachment" from flies before.
I realize some shrubs may emit something that attracts pests. I relayed that there is not a need for a pesticide or fungicide since the insects did no damage. But I wanted to get a second opinion too. The plant overall looks quite healthy.
08-10-2008, 04:05 PM
Flies to Euonymus's Flame
Q. I have a set of three Euonymus Manhattan shrubs, just like the ones I see in Central Park, and they have grown fairly tall, about five feet. They get a lot of sun and have a lot of flowers in late summer. For about three or four weeks, hundreds of flies swarm the shrubs, landing on the flowers. (There are also some bees, but mostly flies.) I would like to plant more euonymus, in shadier spots, and so would my neighbors. I have tried to research the shrub but found nothing about flies. I can't believe this happens all over Central Park.
A. The flies are there at the request of the euonymus, which views them not as pests but as pollinators, and there isn't much you can or should do about it. Many plants, including favorites like hollies, hawthorns and willows, attract flies rather than bees, moths or other insects. Most flowering plants have more than one pollinator, just in case. One type may get preferential treatment -- bees, for example, may be lured with bright colors and sweet aromas -- but being pollinated is more important to the plant than how it is done.
In general, and there are lots of exceptions to the rule, flies are major pollinators if the flowers are white, pale yellow or greenish; if they are more wide open than tubular; and if their aroma is more musky than sweet.
With everything else that happens in Central Park, who would notice a few extra flies?
Garden Q.& A.
By DORA GALITZKI
Published: October 12, 2000
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