Common Houseplant Pests

House Plant Pest Prevention

Unfortunately pests love houseplants, it's the combination of the warmth, light and the proximity of one plant to another that creates the perfect conditions for an infestation.  Some of the most common are listed below along with links to more on that pest or directly to the products for combatting that pest.

Is it Thrips?

The leaf surface turns a silver colour spotted with black spots, flowers are deformed with brown petals.  The pest itself is very small and difficult to see. More on the pest...

How to treat Thrips

Treatment will depend on how well established the infestation is.  Thrips also have different life stages and some treatments only work on the earlier stages.   Amblyseius mites are our most popular Thrips control, they feed on the larvae and will also live on pollen so can offer protection against an outbreak.  Nematodes control the larvae and the pulpae.  Orius is the gold standard in Thrips eating, they attack all life stages of the pest.  More on the treatments...

Ready to shop?  Here's a direct link to the Thrips products...

Is it Red Spider Mite?

Spider mites feed on leaf material.  The leaf damage will start with mottling, new growth will be non existant or sickly.  Leaves may brown and fall off.  

When a plant is infested you will see a fine webbing spread across the plant.  More about the pest...

How to treat Red Spider Mite

In the first instance keep affected plants cool and wet, spider mites thrive in warm dry conditions.  Use a soap based insecticide

Amblyseius Andersoni mites are sold in slow release sachets, they work brilliantly as a preventative measure or for small outbreaks.

If the infestation has taken hold we sell Phytoseiulus persimilis mites which work fast to treat an outbreak.    Here's a link to the products mentioned...

Is it Sciarid Fly (Fungus Gnat)?

This one is easy to spot and may be driving you mad!  Brownish in colour & 3-4mm long they crawl and slowly fly around pots and trays generally being a nuisance.  In their larval stage they are slim white maggots that can be up to 6mm long.  The adults don't cause much more than a headache but the young can be devastating for young plants and new growth.  More about the pest...

How to treat Sciarid Fly

In the first instance you should use nematodes to control this pest, in conjunction with yellow sticky traps to get rid of the adults.  If you are growing in very dry conditions or the growing material isn't suitable Hypoaspis mites are great and can provide protection for several weeks after clearing up the problem.  Here's a link to these controls...

Is it Mealybug?

Little white-grey creatures which look a bit like fluffy white woodlice.  They are first spotted in the joins where leaves meet stems and on the underside of leaves.  You will see white, sicky wooley masses.  More about the pest...

How to treat Mealybug

Clean Mealybug off as soon as you see it, but be careful - it spreads very easily and you don't want to make the problem worse. In temperatures that remain above 20°C, mealybugs can be treated with Brown Australian Ladybirds, Cryptolaemus Montrouzieri which will crawl around the plant eating the mealybugs.  Mealybug treatments...
Still not sure?
You may find that it isn't any of the above, for more pest identification advice head over here or contact us directly via the Contact Us page.

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