How to Manage Pests
Pests in Gardens and Landscapes
Seedcorn maggot—Delia platura
Seedcorn maggot larvae are small, legless, white maggots usually less than 0.33 inch when full grown;
the head end is pointed and the rear is blunt. Adults are dark gray flies about half the size of the common
Maggots kill germinating seeds and very small seedlings. Once the stand is established and seedlings
have developed a few leaves, maggots are unlikely to cause economic damage.
Cool, wet weather promotes seedcorn maggot infestations. Prevention is the best management strategy.
Avoid overfertilization with manure; maggots prefer to lay eggs in rich soil. Disc weeds at least 2 weeks
before planting. Plant transplants or pregerminated seeds. Plant seeds under conditions to promote rapid
germination and establishment. Cover seedbeds with protective
cloth or cover
individual plants to prevent
adults from laying eggs near plants.
to germinating seedlings