When it was announced that the invasive spotted lanternfly was found in Pennsylvania, we got concerned. But the first year these pests came and went without real damage to our crops.
Year two, however, came with an overwhelming abundance of these little pests. Crop damage still remains to be seen, but with the quantity we can safely say this is inevitable given enough time- the volume of lanternflies was truly absurd.
Our home is primarily close to a prime breeding ground for the lanternflies (thanks to our proximity to a natural hillside), and, as it turns out, many of the flowers and crops we grow are these insects' favorite foods.
As the season went on, our house became covered with quite literally hundreds of lantern flies on any given day. Our lemon tree became enveloped with nymphs, we couldn't leave our front door without at least three dive-bombing us, and the trees and plants next to our property had hundreds visibly climbing up each and every day. This is not hyperbole at all- it truly was a spotted lanternfly invasion.
Naturally, as we want our citrus trees, fig trees, grape vines, hibiscus, and others to survive, we went on a mad dash to test as many lanternfly traps and killing mechanisms as we could to see if we could rid ourselves of this pest. So in this one, we wanted to share a bit more about what we tried, what works, what works in some context, and what is our favorite method moving forward.
Note: Most of the methods below were tested primarily on the early nymph stages of spotted lanternflies (black or red-colored), not adults. We will be testing all of these with adults as the season progresses and will add comments over time. We would not be surprised if some of these work on the young nymphs but not adults, or vice versa.