nibbling at your roses? Are there holes in your favourite plant's
leaves? The culprit could be the katydid.
are large green grasshopper-like insects that like to feed on the
buds, flowers, leaves and fruits of a variety of plants, including
roses and citrus. They particularly like the young, developing fruit
of citrus. You are likely to hear them more often than see them,
though, as they sing (a soft chirping sound) and feed at night,
hiding in long grasses (near the plants they feed on) during the
In a recent publication
by HortResearch, katydids were singled out as the
suspected cause of deep, silver-grey scarring that occurs on
the exposed surfaces of satsuma fruit.
Whilst adult katydids are
green, the nymphs take on the colour of whatever they have been
eating. In other words, if the nymph has been feeding on a yellow
rose, it will be yellow and will remain this colour until it has
moulted several times. If it has been feeding on a red flower,
it will be red.
The female adults lay
their eggs, which look like black seeds, onto leaves and branches.
Remove any long grass around affected plants so they have
nowhere to hide. At night, you can track the offenders down with
a torch and catch them.