Saturday, July 29, 2023

Xmas in July

When I saw these bright colors in my yard, I immediately thought of Xmas holly!

Those brightly colored blisters belong to the oak leaf gall midge - Polystepha pilulae, a long legged mosquito-like fly. The midge larvae develop within the leaves until it's time to hatch. The galls for this species are always made on the top surface of oak leaves.

When you look at their texture up close, they're quite beautiful

Their presence does not signify disease; it just appears 'out of place' in our ordered view of how we see our yards.


Bill Grundmann said...


it does look a little like red holly.
i guess these midges are not parasitic, but something else, is there a term for that?

Debbie said...

You're right, they're not parasitic. I think commensalism is the closest description to this type of relationship: one uses the other to benefit without it being detrimental to the host.