The fact that a record number of cicadas are making their way through Illinois as we speak is bad enough, but it might be even worse if you have a garden you're proud of.

I have viewed the historic number of cicadas invading Illinois as a nuisance. It turns out that it might be a bit worse than that if you are a gardener. Just out of curiosity, I did some digging into what cicadas eat and learned some things that I wish I didn't know now.

Reader's Digest has one of the more helpful articles asking the question if cicadas will eat your plants. They pulled information from 4 experts who all said that the short answer is a big "maybe". They say cicadas do draw food from tree roots and plants. Whether it will be enough to kill what's in your garden likely depends on the number of cicadas that descend on your place and how sturdy your plants are.

They advise covering up new plants especially since they would be most likely to not survive a cicada invasion. As for trees, other than some leaves that will likely wither from the assault, most of the damage SHOULD be superficial. That's "should" with a capital "S" because it will depend on a lot of different factors.

The good news is the adult cicadas only live a few weeks so if you can cope with these bugs in Illinois for a month or so, they eventually will pass. Best to prepare your garden for war though as these bugs are arriving imminently.

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