Signs of Black Vine Weevil

Updated November 21, 2016

The black vine weevil is a common garden pest that feeds on many different plants, such as strawberries and azaleas. Black vine weevils are best controlled with pesticides if applied when weevils first emerge on plants.


The black vine weevil is an oblong-shaped insect that has a short snout. This pest is grey, brown or black and is approximately 1/2 inch long. Black vine weevils lay eggs that produce larvae upon hatching. The larvae is white and grub-like, has a brown head and is shaped like the letter C. The larvae feed on plant roots, while adult black vine weevils feed on foliage at night.

Favoured Hosts

Certain species of plants are favoured hosts of the black vine weevil. Strawberries are at risk of black vine weevil infestations, as well as other weevils such as the strawberry weevil. Black vine weevils also feed on winter creeper, yews, azaleas, hostas, lily-of-the-valley, hemlock and euonymus. Homeowners who place these plants in their gardens should be aware that they are favoured hosts of the black vine weevil and often suffer damage from feeding.

Root Damage

Black vine weevil larvae feed on plant roots, often resulting in stunted plants. Root damage from large numbers of this pest often causes the death of the plant, as well. Black vine weevil larvae often leave telltale notches in plant roots, which is the most obvious sign of infestation. Plant roots may also be girdled or stripped of bark.

Foliage Damage

Black vine weevils damage the foliage of host plants from feeding. Adult black vine weevils often feed on the edges of plant leaves. A common sign of black weevil infestation is the appearance of little crescent shaped notches on plant leaves. Plants with needles, such as yews often have notches in the needles or the tip of the needle is bitten off. Some adult weevils devour entire needles.

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About the Author

Tracy Hodge has been a professional writer since 2007. She currently writes content for various websites, specializing in health and fitness. Hodge also does ghostwriting projects for books, as well as poetry pieces. She has studied nutrition extensively, especially bodybuilding diets and nutritional supplements.