Spotted Lanternfly (Lycorma delicatula) arrived in Maryland last year. These invasive insects are being controlled now in 15 sites in Cecil County and several in Harford County. The Maryland Department of Agriculture has expanded its survey sites along the Pennsylvania and Delaware borders to monitor for this pest. They also are surveying in Washington County since Route 81 goes through there. A Spotted Lanternfly infestation was found along Route 81 in Winchester, Virginia.
The map below shows (in blue) where state quarantines for Spotted Lanternfly are in effect in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Delaware, and Virginia. Permits are required for any commercial or university vehicles doing business in the quarantine zone or passing through quarantine areas. Here is a link to the Pennsylvania permit page. Maryland has reciprocity with Pennsylvania for permits.
This is a potentially very devastating pest that has over 70 host plants including vegetables, garden plants, many trees, and especially invasive Tree of Heaven (Ailanthus altissima) which it may need to feed on to complete its life cycle. Lanternfly adults are very active now and are in the process of laying eggs. Please be vigilant and report any sightings to the Maryland Department of Agriculture at Dontbug.MD@Maryland.gov.
For the latest information, check out Penn State Extension’s website on Spotted Lanternfly. They are the leader in research on this pest and have excellent information, photos, and videos.
By Mary Kay Malinoski, Extension Specialist, University of Maryland Extension, Home & Garden Information Center