No. 8/July 31, 2019

Adult billbugs are small weevils, about 3/8 of an inch long, and brown or black in coloration.  They have the distinct long snout and hard wing covers that are characteristic of the weevil family.  Adult billbugs spend much of their time in the soil making them difficult to locate for identification.  When adults are above ground, they are usually flightless and may be seen walking along driveways and sidewalks.  The inability to fly prevents billbugs from traveling as far as some other pest species and means that billbug injury usually does not spread to cover large areas.

Canada Thistle Management in Lawns and Landscapes
Canada thistle (Cirsium arvense) is a noxious (and obnoxious) weed that I occasionally get questions about.  This plant is listed in the noxious weed laws for most states meaning that its control is required by law.  Illinois is no exception.  If Canada thistle is growing on land that you own or manage, you are required to control it.  Failure to do so may result in your being slapped with an unwanted fine.  However, because this law is poorly enforced in many counties, we see more Canada thistle growing happily and spreading wildly than we should. It is commonly found along roadsides and in pastures, lawns, gardens, crops, and meadows.

Pear Trellis Rust
Pear trellis rust (also known as European pear rust) is a fairly rare rust disease in Illinois. Other gymnosporangium rusts diseases (cedar-apple, cedar-hawthorn, and cedar-quince) are much more common, but we have confirmed a few cases of pear trellis rust at the Plant Clinic over the past few years. For more information about the common gymnosporangium rusts, please see this 2017 Home, Yard, and Garden Pest Newsletter article:

Protecting Yourself in the Heat and Humidity
The heat and humidity of summer have kicked in for 2019. Those in the landscape industry spend much of their time outdoors, therefore are at an increased risk for heat exposure and related illnesses. Each year, dozens of workers die, and thousands more become ill while working in extreme heat or humidity. There is a range of heat illnesses, and they can affect anyone, regardless of age or physical condition. These are all preventable if some simple precautions are made. In 2011, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) started a Heat Illness Prevention Campaign that focuses on the dangers of working in the heat.