Leaf miners are tiny larvae of flies or moths that live and feed in the interior of the leaves of many plants causing mottling and curling damage to leaves.
Identify the problem
There are many different insect larvae, usually flies or moths, that are leaf miners.
Leaf mining insect larvae emerge from eggs that the adult females lay on leaves. The larvae burrow and feed their way through the leaves between the upper and lower cuticles. Sometimes this is seen as meandering tracks of pale colouration on the leaves or as growing spots and mottling of the leaves. The leaves will curl and as the affected parts of the leaves die they will die, brown and fall out leaving shot hole like symptoms.
Note: Some diseases cause shot hole symptoms similar to some leaf miners.
Did You Know
- The majority of leaf-mining insects are moths (Lepidoptera), sawflies (Symphyta) and flies (Diptera).