How to Rid the Garden of Japanese Beetles


The Japanese beetle, native to Japan, is a common pest that will destroy any type of vegetation if left unchecked. You can spot a Japanese beetle by its metallic bluish-green body. It is only half an inch long, with tiny white hairs on its abdomen. If you notice these pests on your plants, you will need to get rid of them right away. You don't need to worry, though. Removing the Japanese beetles isn't hard.

Step 1

Fill a small bucket with soapy dish water. Take it out to your plants first thing in the morning. Tap the leaves of the plants, holding the bucket underneath. The Japanese beetles will fall off into the bucket and drown. This works for small infestations.

Step 2

Place a gallon of water in a garden sprayer and add 2 tbsp. of castor oil soap. Spray this mixture over your plants. This is an insecticidal soap that will kill Japanese beetles. It will cover 1,000 square feet.

Step 3

Use an insecticide for adult Japanese beetles if your infestation is severe. Look for the active ingredient carbaryl and be sure to apply the insecticide exactly as directed on the product label. This is important for both effectiveness and safety.

Tips and Warnings

  • Do not use an insecticide for grubs (Japanese beetle larvae). This will not kill the adult beetle that is damaging your plants.

Things You'll Need

  • Small bucket
  • Soapy dish water
  • 1 gallon water
  • 2 tbsp. castor oil soap
  • Garden sprayer
  • Insecticide


  • Purdue University: Killing Japanese Beetles
  • Get Rid of Things: How to Get Rid of Japanese Beetles
  • Almanac: Japanese Beetles
Keywords: Japanese beetle, beetle control, killing Japanese beetles

About this Author

Alicia Bodine has been a professional writer for six years. She has produced thousands of articles for online publications such as Demand Studios, Bright Hub, Associated Content and WiseGeek. Bodine is also the current cooking guru for LifeTips. She has received awards for being a top content producer.