Xestophanes potentillae

The gall wasp Xestophanes potentillae induces galls to form in the creeping stems or roots of Creeping Cinquefoil (Potentilla reptans). Galls developing on the rootstock tend to be cream in colour and globular, often clustered together, where as those on the stems are pale green and usually elongate, pod-like growths.

Both types of gall contain several larval chambers. Development begins during the summer, an they all mature in the autumn where the galls turn orange or light brown. The wasps pupate in the galls during winter and the adult emerges in the following spring. Native, but under recorded in Britain.

Class Insecta (Insects)
Order Hymenoptera (Ants, Bees, Wasps & Sawflies)
Family Cynipidae (Gall Wasps)
Species Xestophanes potentillae (Retzius, 1783)

Photos: On Creeping Cinquefoil (Potentilla reptans), South Staffordshire. July 2020 © Peter Hillman