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Indoor Pests

HOW TO FIGHT INDOOR PESTS

red_spider_mites

Red spider mites

Here are some common indoor pests that could be affecting your house plants. Read the descriptions to help you identify any pests that might be attacking your plants.

Thrips

  • Tiny, black-brown insects.
  • Infest the flowers, flower buds and growing points on the plant.
  • Feeds by filing away the plant tissue then sucking the released sap.
  • Causes distortion and silver streaking or blotching of leaves and flowers.

Whiteflies

  • Small, winged, white insects.
  • Feed on plant sap, on the undersides of the leaves.
  • Secrete honeydew which can make leaves shiny and sticky.
  • Causes mottling or yellowing of leaves and stunting of growth.

Aphids

  • Small, slow moving, oval shaped, soft bodied insects 1/16 to 1/4 inch long.
  • Can be green, black, grey, red, yellow and white.
  • Most adults have no wings but winged forms appear at certain times of the year.
  • Aphids suck on plant sap.
  • They primarily attack new growth and flower buds.
  • Aphids excrete sugary liquid called honeydew.
  • Honeydew causes leaves to become shiny and sticky.
  • Cause discoloration, curling of leaves and wilting of flowers.

Spider Mites

  • Tiny, green, red or yellow insects.
  • Spider mites puncture leaf and suck out both water and food producing green chlorophyll.
  • Leaves become stippled, yellow and dirty.
  • There may be fine webbing on the leaves, in the leaf crotches, or on the flower buds.

Scale

  • Brown flattened bumps along stems, leaves and nodes.
  • They find a feeding site and become immobile sucking on plant juices.
  • Scales excrete honeydew leaving the leaves shiny and sticky.
  • Cause leaf spotting.

Fungus Gnats

  • Small brown-black flies (look like fruit flies).
  • The larvae (white maggots) can be found in the soil feeding on decomposing organic matter.
  • They are common where soil is kept moist to wet.
  • Fungus gnats rarely kill plants— infested plants will more likely die from over watering or poor drainage.
  • Considered a nuisance more than anything.

Mealy Bugs

  • Small, flat, oval, segmented grey-white insects.
  • Live in cottony looking clusters.
  • They can be found in masses in the crotches of the stem or on the leaves.
  • When clustered to feed they look like cotton fluff.
  • They suck on plant juices.
  • They secrete honeydew.
  • Plants may become shiny or sticky from the honeydew.
  • Cause wilting, yellowing and stunting of plants.

 

 

Pest Table

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