ABILENE, Texas (KTAB/KRBC) – In the past week or so, you may have noticed a sticky film on your car. Although many people think it is tree sap, the owner of a local garden center said it – surprisingly – is something entirely different.

“The sap comes from actually an insect, and it’s actually referred to as honeydew. It comes from an insect in the trees,” explained Adam Andrews, owner of Willow Creek Gardens.

These small bugs, called aphids, hide under the leaves, sucking from the leaves and dropping their excrement. That’s the stickiness on your car.  

Andrews continued in explanation, “We had a huge population growth right after the rain.”

Many people treat their trees in the early spring, said Andrews, to prevent this from happening. However, it’s now a little too late to use that treatment.

Not to worry, though. If you didn’t treat your trees last spring, you can still use an insecticide to spray the trees, or spray them with a water hose to knock some of the bugs down.

While a bother to vehicle owners, this honeydew influx seems to be good business for our area car washes.

Over at Mister Car Wash on Pioneer Drive, Assistant Manager Andrew Burthelson told KTAB/KRBC he’s seen around 300 more cars coming by for a wash every day. 

“We hit, on average, between 800 and 900 cars every single day. The past week – maybe two weeks – we’ve been hitting over 1000 cars a day,” Burthelson painted. “Probably our highest day, we hit over 1200 cars.”

Down at Willow Creek Gardens, Andrews said it would take a dry season with falling leaves for the honeydew to get off cars. Until then, lots of residents have been investing in car wash memberships as the sticky film seems like it’s here to stay.