leafhopper insect

Leafhopper. Photo: Charles Ray, Auburn University, Bugwood.org

Updated: March 4, 2021

Adults of most leafhoppers are one-eighth to one-fourth inch long, slender and hold the wings roof-like over the back. Many have angular, pointed heads. Immature leafhoppers, or nymphs, are similar to the adults but smaller with short wings. Most pest leafhoppers are green with some color banding. There are one or more generations a year depending on the species.

Most leafhoppers feed on the upper surface of terminal leaves. They feed by sucking chlorophyll from leaves. This feeding activity results in coarse, white stippling (see photo below). The feeding activities of some species produce curling and stunting of terminal leaves.

stippling injury on a leaf from leafhopper feeding

Stippling injury from leafhopper feeding. Photo: Whitney Cranshaw, Colorado State University, Bugwood.org

immature leafhopper

Immature leafhopper. Photo: John Davidson, University of Maryland


Control is generally not recommended. They are very mobile and new leafhoppers will enter treated areas after sprays have dried.