Scouting for pests: Grasshoppers

Editor’s note: This article is from the archives of the MSU Crop Advisory Team Alerts. Check the label of any pesticide referenced to ensure your use is included

Grasshoppers have long hind legs that are adapted for jumping (view photos). They tend to feed during the day, creating large, ragged holes in plant leaves. High numbers of grasshoppers can cause extensive plant damage within a short period of time. They overwinter as eggs in the growing medium.


Grasshoppers are difficult to control with spray applications of contact insecticides because they are strong fliers and highly mobile. One option is to place a covering over plants until adults are no longer present. Remove weeds from adjacent areas.

Individual plants can be sprayed with Sevin (carbaryl) to protect them from grasshopper or blister beetle damage.  Repeat sprays may be needed if blister beetles or grasshoppers continue to move to sprayed plants from the surrounding area.

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