The only chemical or insecticide currently registered for
the southern pine beetle is Dursban. The chemical is sprayed on the
surface of the tree at weekly intervals to deter the attack of pine
beetle. The chemical does not penetrate the bark of the tree.
Thus, it must be reapplied frequently, usually weekly and after rainfall
events because the insecticide is washed from the surface of the tree.
The entire tree, crown and bole, must be sprayed with the chemical which can
be an expensive proposition especially considering the frequency of
application. Once the beetle is inside the bark of the tree, the
Dursban coating is ineffective in controlling beetle activity. Consult
professionals and follow label instructions before applying
insecticides. Because of expense and logistics of spraying large pine
trees, Dursban is only recommended for high-value trees as a preventive
Some chemical salesmen are suggesting that tree injection
will control southern pine beetle activity. First and foremost is that
the chemical suggested for injection is not registered for control of the
southern pine beetle. Second, research has not shown whether tree
injection for control of the beetle is effective or not. Most
injections will put the chemical in the xylem of the tree where the chemical
is spread by water transport. However, the beetle and its larvae
develop in the inner-bark of the tree where the chemical does not
reside. Tree injected chemicals for control of the southern pine
beetle are not recommended at this time.
In order to protect people and the environment, herbicides and pesticides
should be used safely. This is everyone's responsibility, especially the
user. Read and follow label directions carefully before you buy, mix, apply,
store, or dispose of a pesticide. According to laws regulating pesticides,
they must be used only as directed by the label. Persons who do not obey the
law will be subject to penalties.
Pesticides recommended in this publication were registered for the
prescribed uses when printed. Pesticide registrations are continuously being
reviewed. Should registration of a recommended pesticide be cancelled, the
University of Tennessee would no longer recommend it.
Use of trade or brand names in this publication is for clarity and
information; it does not imply approval of the product to the exclusion of
others, which may be of similar, suitable composition, nor does it guarantee
or warrant the standard of the product.