Stem Breaks From Alfalfa Hopper

 Figure 1. Three-cornered alfalfa hopper adult 
 Photo courtesy of University of California IPM


   The three-cornered alfalfa hopper is a green, wedge-shaped, sap-feeding insect (Figure 1) that causes distinct physical injury. Adults and nymphs girdle stems, lateral branches, or petioles as they feed on legumes and a variety of other plants. Symptoms include yellowing and wilting above the callus tissue that develops at the injury site.  Damaged plants may also break or lodge.
Low numbers of three-cornered alfalfa hoppers are probably present in many Kentucky fields in late summer, but they can reach damaging levels during late summer in alfalfa and double-cropped or late-planted soybeans.
   Generally, an insecticide application is not needed at this point in the season. ∆
   DR. LEE TOWNSEND: Extension Entomologist, University of Kentucky

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