The Pests of the Green Pea Plant

Green peas may be grown in a home garden or on a commercial scale for fresh and frozen distribution. This plant grows on non-irrigated land, and can follow winter wheat or spring barley. While the green pea plant is a good crop plant, it does have a number of associated pests that can diminish crops and destroy the plants themselves. Being aware of the signs, symptoms and conditions associated with these pests will help you keep your green pea plants healthy.

Pea Weevils and Pea Leaf Weevils

Adult weevils overwinter in hedges or other dense vegetation, emerging in the spring to lay eggs. Their larvae can demolish green pea plants and pea crops in no time, with pea weevils burrowing directly through the pea pods to eat all the pea seeds, and pea leaf weevils tackling any visible foliage. These pests must be stopped before infestation to avoid losing the crop because once the pea weevils' eggs are laid, the infestation cannot be reversed. Phosmet is the most common control for these pests.


Both pea aphids and cowpea aphids can destroy 100 percent of all developing green pea plants if not treated or prevented. Ladybugs are not usually an effective control for green pea plant infestations because climactic factors in the areas where green peas are grown cause the ladybug populations to lag too far behind the aphids to do much good. Aphids can also transmit mosaic virus through a crop, and so they must be stopped before they gain traction in an area. Dimethoate is the conventional treatment for aphids on green pea plants.

Rots and Blights

Green pea plants, like most green plants, are susceptible to a variety of fungal infections that result in rots and blights. Rotting is most common when soil is not well-drained, and it results in the death of the plant by starvation if the rot affects the root. Blights tend to discolor and rot away portions of leaves and stems and lead to defoliation and minimization of the eventual harvest. Both of these conditions can be prevented with fungicides. Blights can be contained, controlled and even eradicated by removing and burning affected parts of the plant. Plants with root rot, however, should be removed from the area and disposed of as quickly as possible to prevent the problem from spreading and killing more plants.

Keywords: green pea plant, pea plant diseases, green pea diseases

About this Author

Carole VanSickle has over five years experience working with scientists and creative scholars to promote and explain their work. She is based in Atlanta, Ga., and specializes in scientific, medical and technical writing, SEO and educational content.