HELP! Black Insects on my Trident Maple

cjbonsai

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Hey Everyone, I’m new to the Bonsai Nut but been in this for about 8 years. I recently did some pruning on my Old trident maple and then two days later I notice thousandS of little black insects on the bark. Can someone telL me what they are and the remedy for getting rid of them? Any help is much appreciated as this tree is over 50 years old and NiCE.
 

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Maloghurst

Chumono
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Please show the entire NICE tree so we. An help further. 😀
 

Danteswake

Sapling
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Well a crazy situation may call for crazy ideas. Until you find out what it is, you need them to leave the tree. I read somewhere last night to get rid of some types of tree pests put vinegar in a jar, cover with cellophane, and poke toothpick holes in it. They are attracted to it, go in and cant get out. May buy you some time and wont hurt the tree in the process.
 

Maloghurst

Chumono
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Thanks that is a NICE tree. They are too small for me to tell in the photo. I would blast them off with water. If they show up again I would use a basic organic insecticide spray labeled for use on deciduous trees. That or soap and water mixture has done the trick for most things I’ve come across. But they doesn’t look familiar to me.
 

ABCarve

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Are they moving around? It kinda looks like shotgun fungus but it’s very early for this in my part of the country. Shotgun fungus would be harmless and only aesthetically ugly. It occurs on mulch and develops as an ugly blob. When it rains the spores are launched in a cloud. I’ve had those black dots form on my car, siding of house and just about anything. They are hard to remove but can be scratched off with your fingernail. I don’t see this until midsummer. They don’t disappear over time.
 

PattyB

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This looks very similar to a soil mite or dirt mite that I have seen on orchid mounts especially when the mount has moss growing along with the orchid. The mites eat decaying material and usually indicates a need for repotting or re mounting the plant as the growing medium has broken down. I believe these mites are harmless to the plant yet a good indicator of soil conditions. They are very tiny. Do a search for Euzetes globulus and see if these look like your pest.
 

cjbonsai

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Patty
This looks very similar to a soil mite or dirt mite that I have seen on orchid mounts especially when the mount has moss growing along with the orchid. The mites eat decaying material and usually indicates a need for repotting or re mounting the plant as the growing medium has broken down. I believe these mites are harmless to the plant yet a good indicator of soil conditions. They are very tiny. Do a search for Euzetes globulus and see if these look like your pest.
 

cjbonsai

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You nailed it patty!! Thank you everyone else for your help. I’m going to do a repot today. I was holding off because the tree is so heavy but it’s definetly a sign of soil decay and the need for a repot. Patty do you recommend anything to spray on the tree other than water or water and dish soap to prevent them after the repot? Thanks!
 

sorce

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You nailed it patty!! Thank you everyone else for your help. I’m going to do a repot today. I was holding off because the tree is so heavy but it’s definetly a sign of soil decay and the need for a repot. Patty do you recommend anything to spray on the tree other than water or water and dish soap to prevent them after the repot? Thanks!
People say they are harmless but if there ain't no algae for them to eat, they'll eat new growth before you see it.

I wouldn't Repot unless absolutely necessary, unless you know for a fact they haven't been eating new growth for a month.

Sorce
 

PattyB

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Oh yay, I thought this might be the same little pest. They are so very small it’s hard to capture them in a photo. As I understand they are actually beneficial as they eat decaying material and harmless to plants even though a little freaky when you find them. Curious as to why they are climbing your tree unless it is related to the recent pruning. I would think inorganic soil would be a deterrent for these guys, possibly there is a bit of moss they collect in/under in your pot. Amazing tree you have! I usually just repotted or re mounted my orchids and they were gone, you can flush them away with water. Miticides would probably work though I’ve never used them, just flushed them away with water..outside.

For another bizarre little jewel to find inhabiting your plants, harmless as well, do a search for Pseudoscorpion! I had one in a terrarium for most of a year. Now that little one really freaked me out!

Good luck with the repot
 
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