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Asparagus Miner

Asparagus Miner
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They are about 0.1 inch long shiny black in color. Tiny, whitish eggs (0.001 inch) are laid at the base of the stem. The whitish colored larva is about 0.015 inch long when it hatches from the egg it can grow to about 0.2 inches long. Asparagus miner overwinters in the pupal stage either in the stalk/stem or in the soil. Adults are out in about mid-May to late June and early August to late September.
They tunnel just below the surface of spears, usually near the base of plants. They can cause some tissue breakdown (will appear as brown streaks) which may make spears uneatable, but they do not interfere with water or nutrient uptake and probably do not reduce the number that grows. This insect weakens the plants and then a disease, causing fungus Fusarium will take hold. Most do not see the insect until signs of the disease are apparent. Fusarium on Asparagus plants symptoms are girdle plants then yellowing of foliage and early plant death.