Graphocephala versuta

Versute Sharpshooter

Graphocephala versuta, Leafhopper

Family: Cicadellidae

Subfamily: Cicadellinae

Length: typically 3.5-5.5 mm

Females larger than males


Adults are most commonly encountered in West Virginia between June and October. They may be found on a variety of food plants.

Colors tend to be variable within each Graphocephala species, ranging from green to blue, and from orange to scarlet. Thus color per se should not be relied on for identifications.

One key trait of Graphocephala versuta is the "writing on the head" referred to in the scientific name of the genus: thin black markings on the head. The species also has a broad, pale blue line along the outer margins of the head.

Help is available for differentiating West Virginias common Graphocephala species. A related page pictures nymphs of Graphocephala.

Graphocephala versuta, Leafhopper



This species is common in West Virginia, and lives as far north as Rhode Island. There are as many as four generations per year; the species overwinters in the adult stage.

In early Spring the adults feed on woody plants such as fruit trees and blackberry canes, but later in the year they move to feed on herbaceous plants.
Graphocephala versuta dorsal view, Leafhopper



Lago and Stanford (1989) reported that Graphocephala versuta is a common visitor to marijuana plants. They conducted their research at the University of Mississippi's licensed marijuana plantation.

Graphocephala versuta range map, West Virginia

Insects of West Virginia