The Sweet-Potato Weevil and its Control



Source of Digital Item

National Agricultural Library


IMMENSE LOSSES of sweet potatoes in the Gulf States are being caused by the sweet-potato weevil. This foreign pest, introduced into the United States years ago, has become very destructive recently and now threatens to invade all States in which sweet potatoes are grown.

The slender, metallie-blue weevil, about a quarter of an inch long with red legs and "waist," attaeks leaves, stems, and roots or "tubers," and its whitish larva; or grubs tunnel the stalks and roots and inflict great damage, both in the field and in storage. Owing to the increased production of the sweet potato crop to meet war conditions, this weevil has become a pest of the greatest importance. Indeed, it is to the sweet-potato industry what the boll weevil is to cotton.

This bulletin describes the insect and its injuries and gives a sufficient account of its life history to explain the control measures advised. The weevil can be stamped out in limited regions where it has not yet secured a firm foothold, and then, by quarantines, it can be kept out of States and parts of States not yet infested. It is vitally important at present to combat, by every means available, an insect that threatens to destroy our second most valuable vegetable crop.


The Sweet-Potato Weevil and its Control