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Recently, an invasive species has been making its way through Pennsylvania and was spotted in Winchester, VA. The Spotted Lanternfly is a major problem due to the fact that it’s attacking Ailanthus, apples, and grapes – some of which are very popular in the Virginia Commonwealth area. This infestation could affect the wine industries severely and may also be troublesome to homeowners.

At Timber Works Tree Care, our dedicated and efficient local tree service company in Winchester, VA, helps homeowners stay on top of this problem. Routine maintenance and the removal of infected trees are some of the ways that the spread can be controlled.

Below are a few additional details on the appearance of the species, what damage it could do, and ways that you can protect your yard from infestation:

What is the Spotted Lanternfly?

The Spotted Lanternfly is an invasive species that originated in countries such as India, Vietnam, and China. Their size is a bit bigger than a moth with a black head, translucent spotted wings that are gray-brown, and a yellow abdomen.

When the Lanternfly is resting, however, its translucent wings show off its red hindwings. The Spotted Lanternfly is also believed to be poisonous if ingested by humans or animals.

Why is it Harmful?

The Spotted Lanternfly feeds on more than 70 different plant species. Some of these species are grapes, apples, and Ailanthus altissima (Tree of Heaven). This could be detrimental to Virginia’s wine industries if not minded and contained. Not only do they affect the wine industry, but these pests could also be a nuisance to homeowners if the numbers are high.

Some indirect damage that the Lanternfly may produce are:

  • Sap Accumulation on the Trunk of the Trees: This accumulation may attract ants, wasps, and more that feed on the sap that spills out. The feeding could foster the growth of mold as it collects at the base and may result in the death of the tree.


Spotted Lanternflies feed in clusters on a single tree trunk. These clusters could look very unseemly and can be extremely difficult, and even dangerous, to attempt to get rid of them. To protect you and your family, it’s best to catch the problem before it gets out of hand.

What Can You Do to Protect Your Yard?

The City of Winchester is working together with the Virginia Cooperative Extension, United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), and The Virginia Department of Agriculture (VADA) to contain the spread and problem of the Spotted Lanternfly.

However, the infestation could be controlled with the removal of host trees and pesticide applications to your remaining trees. From residential communities to business landscapes, we all must work to minimize the probability of the species from traveling outside of the quarantine zone.

Another way you can protect your yard is to avoid parking in tree lines. The further you are away from potential infected trees, the safer your home will be. When you are parked, make sure that your windows are rolled up so that they don’t fly and surprise you on your next trip.

Let Timber Works Tree Care Protect Your Yard With Our Efficient Local Tree Services in Winchester, VA

Though this threat is a major issue, there are many ways that you can protect yourself and your yard from being affected. Being vigilant of your surroundings and the health of your trees will help you catch abnormalities in time to take care of the problem before it becomes even more complex.

When it comes to tree removal, maintenance, and more, let Timber Works Tree Care be your reliable local tree service in Winchester, VA. Our certified arborists can help you determine if a tree presents a threat to your landscape. If it does, our experienced crew will take care of the diseased tree safely and efficiently, leaving your yard looking better than it was before. Together, we can contain these pests until proper treatment is found.

If you suspect that a tree may be affected by these pests, contact (540) 692-9606 or fill out our form to receive a free quote.

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