House Plants Pest Control

House plants pests control. Insects and pests can infest healthy houseplants causing them to become sickly and diseased. There are various methods for identifying and eliminating houseplant pests.

New plants are often the source of insect infestation. Houseplant pests can be brought home and spread to other plants when a new plant is purchased and not thoroughly checked for insects. Another common way insects infest houseplants is when plants are taken outdoors and brought back inside without proper treatment. Sometimes pests are present in potting soil and healthy plants become infested during repotting.

According to the website "Nebguide", "Guide to Growing Houseplants", written by Donald H. Steinegger, Extension Horticulturist, Fredrick P. Baxendal, Extenison Entomologist, and John E. Watkins, Extension Plant Pathologist, houseplants should be repotted using soil which has been sterilized to prevent various soil inhabiting insects. When new plants are brought home, the leaves, soil, and stems should be examined for insects. Doing so will allow the plant to be treated before other plants become infested.

The same article recommends examining plants that have been outside before bringing them back indoors and around other plants. Also, plants that have been outdoors should be kept away from other plants, even if there are no obvious pests, for at least a week to see if a problem develops. It also suggests the removal of dead leaves or other debris because it creates a hiding place for insects.

In the website article "Houseplant Bugs and Pests on ITV", published by Green & Ever Growing, harmful insects on the leaves, stems, and in the soil of houseplants are identified and can therefore be treated accordingly.

Mealy bugs resemble white cotton, and they are located in the crevices between leaves and stems. Direct contact with spray on these pests is necessary in order to kill them and prevent further damage. Treatment may need to be repeated before successfully eliminating this pest.

Aphids are usually found outdoors, but they sometimes attack indoor plants. They are most commonly found on new growth and on plant blooms. Aphids can be green, black, or yellow in color, and they are a problem mainly during the summer months.

If you see a hard shelled, slow moving bump on a plant stem, it is more than likely scale. It can be easily removed by hand, and the plant can be sprayed with flax soap and water, pesticide soap, or rubbing alcohol mixed with dish washing detergent. It is important to remove all scale and watch for further outbreaks.

Spider mites are extremely small and resemble tiny spiders. They are typically found under leaves along with their webbing. A plant that is infested with spider mites will drop leaves and lose color. Webs should be removed, and the plant treated regularly since eggs are not affected by sprays. If the plant has severe damage it should be disposed of.

Tiny, white, flying insects are white flies. The eggs can be found under leaves of affected plants, and they appear to be little white spots. Since these pests fly, they are easily transferred to other plants.

"Guide to Growing Houseplants" also recommends ways to eliminate insects without the use of pesticides. Large insects can be eliminated by hand. Dead leaves and stems should be discarded, and the plant should be repotted using a sterile potting soil. Healthy leaves need to be cleaned with rubbing alcohol or soapy water. The plants should be thoroughly rinsed and the process repeated every five to seven days at least twice.

The same article recommends taking a cutting and disposing of heavily infested plants. When chemical-free methods fail to work, a houseplant pesticide is recommended. There are many products available. Some are specifically for certain types of plants and insects. "Guide to Growing Houseplants" recommends reading labels carefully to find a pesticide which is formulated to treat specific houseplants and insects. Always remember to use caution with pesticides in areas where children or pets may come in contact with them.

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