June gardening tips: Address gooseberry sawfly

This is the time when the leaves of your gooseberry bushes are shredded into doilies by the tiny caterpillars of the gooseberry sawfly, which rear up into a fearsome S-shape as you approach. They’re easy enough to kill by spraying with a contact insecticide, but consider this. You eat the fruit, not the leaves. The loss of foliage reduces the vigour of the shoots and makes the fruit easier to locate. The creatures don’t harm the fruit and only attack gooseberry bushes. Should we just live and let live? You decide.

* Follow Country Life on Twitter

* Subscribe to Country Life; Get Country Life on IPad