What Diseases and Pests Attack Bamboo?: [Identify and Treat Them]

If there is a plant that has been used by humans, it is bamboo; so knowing how to treat bamboo diseases is important.

The good news is that they are quite resistant to attacks from all kinds of microorganisms, insects and fungi, so helping them to progress is not difficult.

But it is not enough just to want him to be well, we have to make an effort to recognize what symptoms he is presenting and the actions that we can apply to counteract them.

And that is exactly what we will talk about today, so you better pay all the attention so that you can keep your bamboos in optimal conditions.


The disease causes spots to appear on the back of the leaves and, in some cases, along the trunk.

This action can be evidenced in two different ways depending on the type of cochineal that is producing it:

  1. Brown spots with a soft and cottony consistency, apparently with a rough layer on top. They can vary in shade in terms of brown, some being lighter and others darker.
  2. White spots with soft elevations as if it were cotton.

Although these spots can be easily removed, the reality is that it is not enough to attack the insect that produces them.

Mealybug treatment on bamboo

To get the plant back in optimal conditions, it will be necessary to apply an appropriate insecticide for this disease.

The correct way to do it will depend largely on the state of the insects, being much easier to eliminate the larvae than the adults.

After the pest is eliminated, the disease symptoms will disappear allowing the bamboo to return to its natural condition.

Likewise, potassium soap can be applied to the underside of the plants and neem extract, which will act as an insecticide.


Mites are present in almost all environments and do not give bamboo plants respite.

Its action is evidenced by the presence of small yellow spots on the underside of the leaves.

This action causes them to wear out in their structure and end up falling, causing damage to the development of the plant.

Sometimes, it will be possible that they also form a series of cobwebs that further facilitates recognition due to mite attack.

Treatment of mites in bamboo

When the attack is superficial and has not become serious , it is best to moisten the plant more frequently.

This is because the mites do not see in the humidity a pleasant ecosystem for their subsistence and they end up disappearing.

But when the attack is more serious, it will be necessary to apply some type of chemical product to help control it.


It is another of the insects that are capable of making the bamboo plant sick more quickly.

To recognize aphids, you only have to look at their structure since they are of similar colors, such as green, yellow or white.

As they consume the sap of the plant, they end up weakening it excessively, possibly even causing death.

They attack in groups, so when you see one, surely there are others nearby.

Treatment of aphids on bamboo

To deal with aphids, it is essential to use a chemical product capable of causing them the necessary damage for their elimination.

However, it must be taken into account that this product is not so harmful that it also ends up affecting the correct development of the plant.

If you do not have proper knowledge about which one to buy, it is best to seek advice from a specialized center such as a nursery.

leaf fall

Bamboo, although it is very resistant, can suffer some damage caused by poor care.

The fall of the leaves in inappropriate seasons such as summer or spring can occur.

However, the conditions that are generating this condition should not be lost sight of.

If in a short time it is seen that the plant is already renewing its leaves, there is nothing to worry about since it is a normal cycle.

But if it is the case that the fall of leaves is a product of humidity, the treatment suggested below will have to be done.

Treatment of leaf drop in bamboo

When leaf drop is noticeable in a strange condition, this may be due to excess moisture contracted after irrigation.

To help it return to its natural state, a good plan is to work the land where it is planted to help it dry out.

If this action is not carried out at the correct time, the plant could die.

With these simple tips you will have the opportunity to see your plant radiant and lush as always after an illness.

If you have a bamboo plant at home, take care of it like a treasure because that is just what it is.

white spider

To combat a white spider infestation, an extract of garlic and chili can be applied, although if the plant is very affected, it is best to eliminate it to prevent it from spreading to the others.

If the problem persists, it is important to consult an expert to apply an effective acaricide.


It attacks the aerial part of the plant, mainly the leaves and stems, where powdery masses with a rusty appearance appear.

The recommended treatment is based on fungicides.

Red spider

It can be wetted at night by sprinkling to maintain humidity.

To combat it, an extract of garlic and chili can be applied, although if the plant is very affected, it is best to eliminate it to prevent it from spreading to other plants.

bamboo wire worm

It is the common name of the larvae of beetles that live in the soil (Coleoptera: Elateridae), which have caused economic losses in the production of bamboo in China.

The larvae damage the underground shoot and root system of the bamboo.

Noctuids Bamboo noctuids (Lepidoctera: Noctuidade)

They feed on bamboo shoots. Among them Kumasia kumaso, Apamea apameoides, Oligia vulgaris, and Apamea repetita conjuncta is the most important, which can cause about 90% of deaths.

It is common to find several of these species next to bamboo shoots.

The damage is caused by the larvae, which bore into new shoots and stems, causing shoot death or damage in most cases.

bamboo weevils

There are about 18 species of weevils (Coleoptera: Curculionidae) distributed in China, Bangladesh, Japan, India, Myanmar, Brazil, Sri Lanka that attack bamboo shoots.

Both adults and larvae of these weevils feed on shoots, although the larvae, which bore into the bamboo shoots, are responsible for most of the damage.

The Stigma chinensis (Chrysomelidae)

It attacks only the new growing stems and as a consequence the internodes become short and sometimes crooked.

If the attack is severe, the stems are lost. The eggs are laid on the tender stems and later the damage caused by the larva stops the growth of the stem.

bamboo lobster

Locust is one of the most important insect pest groups affecting bamboo.

There are about 40 species of bamboo locusts that feed on bamboo leaves.

They are classified into various genera of which Hieroglyphus are the most common. Both adults and nymphs feed on bamboo shoots and leaves. They cause a complete defoliation of the bamboo support.

sheet rollers

Leaf rollers (Lepidoptera Pyralidae) belong to the most important groups of bamboo leaf feeders. More than ten species of bamboo leaf rollers attack bamboos.

Among them, four species Algedonia coclesalis, Crocidophora evenoralis, Demoboty pervulgalis, and Circobotys aurealis are the most important. The damage is caused by the larvae, which attach the leaves like boxes and feed on the upper tissues of the leaves.

Cyrtotrachelus longipes (Curculionidae)

It is a worm that attacks the upper apex of new stems and in most cases eats them.

How do we protect bamboo from insect attack?

Bamboo is highly attacked by insects, particularly after it has been pruned for use.

For this reason, it is necessary to carry out the necessary care to avoid further damage. Plant protection can be divided into two lines: a) the plant in cultivation and b) the bamboo as a product.

There are two ways to protect against insect damage:

  1. The first is to vary the harvest season to alter the life cycle of the pest.
  2. The other is to treat the bamboo cuttings physically or with chemicals. Physical treatments include: fire, boiling the wood, and varying the harvest season. Chemical treatments, on the other hand, include mercury and boric acid solution, among others. However, the most effective control, whether the bamboo is uncut in the clump or in the workshop, is to burn the stems that have been attacked.

References and bibliography

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