Expert Answer

Q: Could a Christmas tree be filled with bugs?


We have seen a flurry of news articles on social media this year regarding bugs on Christmas trees. One article claims an infestation with as many as 25,000 bugs! This seems a bit exaggerated, unless we are talking about the tree at Rockefeller Center! Many of you have written to us asking how true these news stories are and how concerned your customers should be this year. So, let’s take a closer look.

There is some truth that Christmas trees could harbor some pests. The more common ones you might see are aphids, adelgids, mites and psocids. Have your customers do a quick inspection with the help of a flashlight before bringing it indoors. They may even considering leaving it outside or in a garage for 24 hours.  You might suggest the customer give the tree a good shake before bringing it in the house and decorating it.  During the rest of the season, recommend they vacuum the floor around the tree regularly. Above all, a tree should never be treated with insecticides, as it could be flammable. If a customer should see a lot of bugs indoors, they should call you out for an inspection.