Earwigs usually aren't regarded as a problem insect pest, but they can attack plants, causing damage particularly to flowers and flower buds.

Earwigs cause damage to plants as they eat the young leaves and flowers. They will often eat the developing flower buds of chrysanthemums, dahlias, clematis and other plants.


Irregular shaped holes in leaves and flower petals.

Treatment and control
  • Make traps with straw packed inside a plant pot upturned on top of a cane placed near the flowers. Empty daily and remove the earwigs.
  • Smear canes and other supports with petroleum jelly to stop them climbing up and getting at the leaves and flowers.