Pine needle scale

Chionaspis pinifoliae


Pine needle scale

Pine and spruce. It overwinters in the egg stage under the scale covering; there may be two generations. Eggs and first instar crawlers are red; later instars are yellow. Look for the first crawler stage as Vanhoutte spirea or common lilac are in bloom.

Pine needle scaleSecond generation crawlers are present during bloom of Hydrangea arborea ‘Grandiflora’ or ‘Annabelle’. Branches infested with pine needle scale may turn yellow and have poor growth. Heavily encrusted branches may appear stunted.


Several small wasps feed on pine needle scale. Spray infested branches with a horticultural oil when crawlers emerge in mid-May (spirea or lilac bloom). Dead scales will remain on needles for a year or longer.

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