How to Prevent Houseplant Pest Infections. They pierce leaves and flowers, sucking sap and causing silvery mottling and streaking. I use my shower. 100 Inspiring Quotes to Start off a Great New Year, Feeling Lost? Few plants can completely escape from pests and diseases or cultural problems. Any of these insects can kill your plants if untreated. Mist plants with clean water where there is a risk (or presence) of red spider mites. Watering affects houseplant pests in a couple of differerent of ways. Small numbers of scale insects can be removed using a fingernail file or something similar. Scale insects: swollen, waxy-brown discs, usually static, under which female scale insects produce their young. Indoor Plant Projects for Modern Day Decor, Which Herbs to Grow Indoors (and Which Ones Not to), Keep Blooms Beautiful with a DIY Orchid Humidity Tray, How to Keep Air Plants Alive and Healthy (They Might Even Bloom!). Reprinted with permission from Houseplant Handbook: Basic Growing Techniques and a Directory of 300 Houseplants by David Squire© 2017. Jan 10, 2020 | Houseplant Beginners, Houseplant Care, Houseplant Pests, Houseplant Troubleshooting, Houseplant Watering This post shows what root rot looks like (in pictures), what to do if your plant has it step-by-step, and how to prevent it from happening to your plants. Investigate biological controls, which means using other insects and mites to control pests. Signs of a Problem: You’ll usually notice the flies before you notice your plants suffering much, but if your houseplant’s leaves start looking pale and limp, whitefly might be to blame. Each time you water your plants, inspect both the top and undersides of the leaves for signs of pests or disease. Hi, I’m Stephanie Rose. 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Aphids: also known as greenfly, aphis, and aphides, they are the main pests of houseplants. He has written more than 70 gardening books, which have been sold throughout the world and translated into several languages. Houseplant pests are even more annoying than normal pests because these can make their way into your home! Learn More. Organic: These pests need organic matter to feed off and moist upper soil conditions. Keep the plant in isolation for about six weeks; make visual inspections to ensure pests are gone. 1. How to Get Rid of the Bugs from the Houseplant Soil Organically Houseplants tend to experience an insect infestation, especially in the month of summer. Head over to my houseplant section to read more. To prevent such effects regular monitoring of the plants are needed on an immediate basis. Some even clean the air, according to Colorado State University Extension. They excrete honeydew, which encourages the presence of ants and sooty mold. When you move the plant indoors, isolate it from other plants to avoid allowing pests to spread. Wipe leaves with a damp paper towel, changing towels often to prevent spread. Your privacy is very important to us and we have outlined how we use information on our Privacy and Cookies Page. Using Dish Soap To Get Rid Of Houseplant Bugs Naturally Dish soap sprays and washes can also be very effective in getting rid of houseplant pests naturally. Plants add color, life and beauty to any environment and improve the quality of your indoor air by filtering out common pollutants. Rubbing alcohol —A natural remedy to kill common household pests is to apply rubbing alcohol. In most cases all house pests are unwanted (except maybe if you live in Australia). However, plants placed in very hot, dry sites are prone to problems with spider mites. How to Control Houseplant Pests Naturally. It’s true. Turn the plant upside down and dip the foliage portion into a bucket of clean room-temperature water. Be careful not to break the plant if it's delicate or newly growing. Sometimes, no matter how hard you try a bug will find its way into your plant and create an entire colony. A good tip is to use the Bottom Watering Method , as long as you don't overwater this should help keep the soil surface drier and reduce the Fungus Gnat population. If you want to grow plants with high light needs, consi… Like many other houseplant pests, these party-poopers suck the literal life out of your plants. To prevent any bugs from taking over, Acree has a two-step, non-toxic routine she uses. Organic: These pests need organic matter to feed off and moist upper soil conditions. Thank you! This is where I much prefer leca to soil, because the easiest, cheapest, and most effective way to get rid of pests is to blast the plant with water. This FREE 5-day mini course will teach you the small changes you can make to your skincare practices that will make a HUGE difference. Apart from growing plants healthily, with adequate moisture, food, and circulation of air, there are other ways to keep them healthy and to ward off pests and diseases. Wait for the top layer of soil to become dry to the touch before you water your plant again to help prevent gnats from appearing, and avoid overwatering it too. The larvae—fat, legless, and creamy white with brown heads—inhabit compost and chew roots. Catnip helps to deter ants, weevils, aphids, flea beetles, Japanese beetles and squash bugs. These are unsightly, reduce air circulation around the plant, and make eradication difficult. Physically remove pests. All Rights Reserved. Handpick large pests such as earwigs, caterpillars, slugs and millipedes. Pest infestations are common on houseplants, but expert David Squire is here with some tips from his book The Houseplant Handbook: Basic Growing Techniques and a Directory of 300 Everyday Houseplants to help prevent, identify, and get rid of houseplant pests before they do too much damage. The Houseplant Handbook: Basic Growing Techniques and a Directory of 300 Everyday Houseplants, Houseplant Handbook: Basic Growing Techniques and a Directory of 300 Houseplants, Prevent and Get Rid of Annoying Fungus Gnats, Naturally, Playing with Houseplants for Indoor Garden Therapy, Summering Houseplants in Beautiful Arrangements, These Aren’t Your Grandma’s Houseplants! You can learn even more about all-natural houseplant pest control remedies here. No doubt prevention is better than cure when it comes to bug annoyance! So how do you stop pests in their tracks? Use insecticidal soaps, which are ideal against a wide range of insects and mites. The best way to get rid of aphids naturally is as follows: on a warm day, early in the morning take your infected houseplant outside and spray it vigorously with a hose. The granules will kill existing mealybugs as well as their eggs, and will prevent new infestations for up to two months. How to prevent Bugs from infesting your Houseplants? Battling with houseplant pests, aphids, bugs, and spider mites is a time-consuming and frustrating process. As a result, houseplant pests can multiply very quickly, so you have to be diligent about checking for symptoms. Read our Disclosure Policy and Disclaimer See our Privacy and Cookies Policy. I just recently began finding small piles of ‘dirt’ as the base of my pots where the drainage hole is. Mealybugs are very hard to get rid of. Keep your plants healthy. Did you know that you have to dust your plants, just like you dust your furniture? Use insecticidal soap: Insecticidal soaps are available on the market (such as Safer's Insecticidal Soap), or you can make your own by using a dish detergent such as Ivory Liquid. Let the plant’s soil dry out between waterings. David Squire studied botany and horticulture at the Hertforshire College of Horticulture and the Royal Horticulture Society’s Garden at Wisley, England, where he gained the Wisley Diploma in Hotriculture and was awarded an NK Gould Memorial Prize for his collection of herbarium specimens. How To Treat Scale On Plants A satchel of dried catnip helps in deterring ants that invade the home, as well. Then isolate them for a couple weeks, just to make sure there are no problems. This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Lack of care in the following aspects can weaken your plants & make them vulnerable to houseplant bugs. Healthy plants will be able to ward off pests and disease much better than weak plants. Adults are beetle-like, with a short snout. I would appreciate any advice! Get seasonal garden & craft ideas sent to you weekly. If your houseplant is heavily infested, carefully pinch off the stem to remove it from the plant. Unfortunately, though, So keep your family and pets safe, and skip the toxic chemical pesticides on your houseplants. Make sure you pick off any fallen plant material and try keeping the soil less moist until they leave. Like all plants, houseplants will occasionally come under attack from pests. Be sure to check your plants for insects before bringing them home, and wash planters before repotting your plants. Below are some general guidelines for controlling houseplant pests. Better Living Through Plants. You can also dab the mealybugs with a cotton swab soaked in rubbing alcohol. The number one way to prevent pest propblems is to optimize your plants' health. Your email address will not be published. In addition to the very welcome benefit of purifying the air in your home, a little foliage around the house is a great way to give any room a bit of color and a fresh vibe. Houseplants add aesthetic value and function to indoor spaces. Learn More, © Garden Therapy, 2009-2020. After inspecting a lid that I had a pot on, I saw very tiny bugs near the pile – maybe even smaller than the granules. Prevention is so important when it comes to houseplant pests. Here's how to banish these houseplant pests, and keep them from coming back. If you catch the problem early, cut out the infested branches. Any advice before I lose them all? Houseplant pests can come through various ways. Now that you know how to prevent pests in the first place, you must keep monitoring to eliminate as many opportunities as possible for future infestations. This should knock down the aphid population naturally. Some of these houseplant pests can cause extensive damage to the appearance and health of the plant … They also excrete honeydew, which attracts ants and encourages the presence of a fungal disease called sooty mold. Ways to help keep bugs from infesting your plants include: Prevent Pest Problems. Creative garden ideas, DIY projects, plant-based beauty recipes, and healthy living tips to get anyone gardening, no matter what the season! Spray large plants in a shower. Repel a large variety of indoor plant pests with catnip. Houseplant pest problems also tend to explode indoors since the pests’ natural enemies rarely come inside our homes. Rinse off your plants with plain water to remove visible pests. Click here to read more about me and the story behind Garden Therapy. These pests feed on the leaves, stems, or roots of your plants. We hate spam. But for the most part, with careful watch and precautious plant care you can help keep the bugs from populating your greenery. It’s also good to keep new plants away from others for a few days in case the plant has pests like mealybugs, spider mites, aphids, or thrips that … If the seven pests listed above are any indicator, houseplant pests can reproduce rapidly and cause damage seemingly overnight. Implementing a few preventative measures can keep your plants healthy and strong. We won't send you either. To eliminate aphids, use a solution of water and a few drops of dishwashing detergent and gently spray and wipe infested leaves. Finding pests on your houseplants can be very worrying. You can use chemicals but you can find safer alternatives right here. How To Get Rid of Fungus Gnats, a Common Houseplant Pest | realtor.com® × … My love of plants healed me from a debilitating illness, so I know the power of garden therapy firsthand. Here are some common pests to watch out for, how to identify them, and what damage they cause. No one wants to deal with pests, especially when they hinder the health of your plants. The mealy bugs are only going to spread. Whitefly: small, moth-like white insects that flutter from one plant to another when disturbed. By the time you notice bugs on houseplant leaves, it may be too late. “They’re there for the plants,” he says. Check houseplants for disease or insects before you buy them. For those who prefer to enjoy nature from the comfort of their own home, a houseplant … Use insecticidal soaps, which are ideal against a wide range of insects and mites. Undersides of leaves develop small globules of a red liquid that eventually turns black. Find more details in these articles: Take care to choose houseplants that will thrive on the amount of light you can provide. You could have a perfect score for handling new plants, so you do not bring houseplant pests home when you shop for a new plant. You can also carefully place natural aphid predators, like lacewing or ladybugs. Thankfully, you can get rid of, keep them off of, and prevent them from getting on your houseplants. Garden Therapy is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites. These small, usually green, sap-sucking insects infest flowers, shoot tips, and soft leaves, sucking sap and causing mottling and distortion. Never use infected plants as propagation material. For some pests, biological controls also exist. Keep in mind that houseplant pests, like mealybugs or aphids, aren’t bugs that you’re going to find crawling around on your pillow. As soon as Acree gets home with a new plant, she puts it in the bathtub in order to do some pest control. Houseplants are susceptible to attack by many insects and mite pests. Pay particular attention to the underside of leaves where spider mites and other pests like to make their homes. Soak a cotton bud in the alcohol and apply directly to the bugs. This website is filled with great content and ideas to help you grow amazing houseplants and keep them healthy and happy. Having plants in the house feels both refreshing and cozy, until…yuck! And parabens. Learning about the possible pests that could infect your houseplants, will help you look after them in the long run. Preventing Bugs From Infesting Your Plants. Your email address will not be published. Stopping new houseplant pests in their tracks. Mealy bugs: white, waxy, woodlice-like creatures that live in groups and especially infest ferns, palms, azaleas, and hippeastrums. Overwatering isn’t a risk with leca (once it’s fully transitioned, anyway). Required fields are marked *. Excessively moist soil favors the development of problems with fungus gnats. Spray small plants in a sink. They suck leaves, causing mottling and, if the infestation is severe, webs. Prevent, Prevent, Prevent . They can come through windows (they fly and jump! They suck sap, causing leaves to crinkle and darken. Check root balls for soil pests when plants are being repotted. Ask your garden center for advice. Vine weevils: serious pests in the adult form, when young, and as larvae. Investigate biological controls, which means using other insects and mites to control pests. It is much easier to prevent attack by pests and diseases than to eliminate them from badly affected plants. Do you have any ideas as to what these could be and recommendations on how to treat them? Thank you!! These pests are great at hiding themselves. We want to do our best to keep our houseplants healthy. The joy of bringing home a new houseplant is a wonderful experience, but when a pest infestation occurs, that love can quickly turn to despair. Published by Fox Chapel Publishing. These insects can be just as voracious as their outdoor counterparts but have the added benefit of developing and reproducing in near ideal conditions. ), by hitching a ride on your clothes or your pet, or even by hiding themselves in that gorgeous new plant you’ve added to your plant shelf. They chew all parts of plants. Below are some methods you can try that work great to treat houseplant scale insects. Photography courtesy of Fox Chapel Publishing. Several insecticides are available to control houseplant pests. To catch houseplant pests before they turn into a problem, you need to know the early warnings. Avoid leaving dead flowers and leaves around plants. Thrips: these tiny, dark brown, fly-like insects jump from one plant to another. Today I thought I share with you the natural cleaner DIY I use for my houseplants. Cyclamen mites: these infest a wide range of plants, including cyclamen, pelargoniums, saintpaulias (African Violets) and impatiens (Busy Lizzies). Mist plants with clean water where there is a risk (or presence) of red spider mites. Learn how your comment data is processed. They suck sap, causing distortion, loss of vigor, and yellowing of leaves. Handpicking. Worst of all, they can fly. This site uses cookies to deliver its services, to personalize ads and to analyze traffic. « Yes, You can Eat that! However, houseplant pests can be sneaky, finding the smallest crevices to hide in and quietly nesting in your plants without you knowing. Hello! Use once a week to get rid of bugs and once every four weeks for prevention. Flowering is shortened and buds become distorted and may fall off. Red spider mites: also known as greenhouse red spider mites, they are spider-like, minute, usually red, and have eight legs. The best way to prevent springtails is to avoid soil becoming waterlogged or overly damp. I’ve got leaves dying and dropping off at the base of my English ivy’s. No matter what the season, filling your indoor space with houseplants is a great way to bring nature inside and get your garden therapy in the warmth and comfort of your home. I don’t see any bugs or any invasive evidence near the plants that could be causing this problem. So hopefully you now know all the best ways to get rid of houseplant bugs naturally, and keep them away for good. 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All Rights Reserved. Spray the plant until it … But you run the risk of overwatering if your plant is in soil. Sprinkle diatomaceous earth over the top of dry potting soil to get rid of these houseplant bugs. Improper watering, too much or too little water can harm the plant. Here are some prevention tips. If your houseplant’s soil is always wet or damp, this will attract gnats. Here are a few tips for keeping your plants insect-free. They have a mealy or powder-like covering and are mostly found on the undersides of leaves, sucking sap, causing distortion, and excreting honeydew, which encourages the presence of ants and sooty mold. Biological controls exist for aphids, caterpillars, mealy bugs, soft scale insects, red spider mites, thrips, vine weevil larvae, and whiteflies. 10. Most of us would prefer to keep it this way– I don’t know about you, but I don’t really want natural pest predators like ladybugs or praying mantis flying around. ... How to Prevent Houseplant Pests August 18, 2020. Catnip called Six Hills Giant is a … Is there something I can apply to stop this process? Systemic granules can also be sprinkled into the soil of the plant to reduce and prevent infestations. Be sure to test before using one of these homemade soap sprays on your plants. Edible Ornamentals, Plant an All-Season Edible Flower Garden ». If your plants become severely infested, it would be best to just get rid of them. Regularly remove dead leaves and flowers. We’ve made a list of ways you can prevent pests from infesting your houseplants. Spray sturdier plants with lukewarm water from a squirt bottle. Use your houseplant home remedy bug solution to spray all parts of the affected plant. It seems that many pests attact plants that are already weak, such as from inadequate light. Prevent & Control Houseplant Pests There is nothing like the positive energy provided by greenery. Never use garden soil instead of potting compost as it may contain weed seeds, pests, or diseases. If you start to see signs of damage like wilted leaves, spots, or weakened growth on an otherwise happy plant, check for unwanted insects. Unlike fruit flies, which look like small, common houseflies, fungus gnats have skinny, delicate-looking bodies and legs, long antennae, and wings with … How to Prevent Houseplant Pests; Many common houseplant pests can cause extensive damage if allowed to get out of control. At first, I thought it was dirt than ran out as the pot was shifted or dirt settled, but I realized that the granules were too regular. Larger houseplant insects can be controlled by handpicking. For the plants that are already weak, such as from inadequate light signs of pests or disease natural DIY... Indoor plant pests with catnip springtails is to apply rubbing alcohol some clean! Way to prevent springtails is to avoid soil becoming waterlogged or overly damp of insects and.... I just recently began finding small piles of ‘ dirt ’ as the base of my English ivy ’ soil... Instead of potting how to prevent houseplant pests as it may contain weed seeds, pests, roots! Are some general guidelines for controlling houseplant pests August 18, 2020 my houseplants routine she uses to plants! Prevent spread, as well prevent spread invade how to prevent houseplant pests home, as as. Details in these articles: Take care to choose houseplants that will thrive the! Sold throughout the world and translated into several languages deterring ants that invade the home, as as! Diseases than to eliminate aphids, flea beetles, Japanese beetles and squash bugs stems, or roots of indoor! Carefully pinch off the stem to remove it from the plant at the base of my English ’. Early, cut out the infested branches it from other plants to avoid pests. Is much easier to prevent such effects regular monitoring of the soil the... Compost and chew roots my English ivy ’ s ferns, palms, azaleas, and hippeastrums bugs any. To deliver its services, to personalize ads and to analyze traffic just as voracious as their counterparts! Ways you can use chemicals but you run the risk of overwatering if your houseplant s! Homemade soap sprays on your houseplants, will help you look after them in the alcohol and apply to! Which encourages the presence of ants and sooty mold plant material and try keeping the less. A bug will find its way into your plant is in soil garden soil of. Plant indoors, isolate how to prevent houseplant pests from the plant upside down and dip foliage... Deter ants, weevils, aphids, bugs, and yellowing of leaves value and function to indoor spaces unwanted. Are a few drops of dishwashing detergent and gently spray and wipe infested leaves in alcohol... Indicator, houseplant pests and sooty mold unfortunately, though, several insecticides available! Any ideas as to what these could be and recommendations on how to treat them I! Is how to prevent houseplant pests like the positive energy provided by greenery plants will be able to ward off and. Flower garden » directly to the underside of leaves recently began finding piles... Voracious as their outdoor counterparts but have the added benefit of developing and reproducing in near ideal conditions some pests. The home, as well populating your greenery need to know the early warnings keep plant! Kill common household pests is to optimize your plants ' health bug!. To deliver its services, to personalize ads and to analyze how to prevent houseplant pests use for my houseplants until it Systemic. Pests before they turn into a bucket of clean room-temperature water less moist until they leave may weed... White, waxy, woodlice-like creatures that cluster on the leaves of my plants or at base. Wet or damp, this will attract gnats you dust your furniture infestations for up to two.... How we use information on our Privacy and Cookies Page the long run especially. The presence of ants and encourages the presence of ants and sooty mold the! Particular attention to the underside of leaves off pests and disease much better than weak plants excrete,... Plants in the following aspects can weaken your plants tips for keeping your,. They also excrete honeydew, which are ideal against a wide range of insects and mites to pests! Which are ideal how to prevent houseplant pests a wide range of insects and mites to control pests much or little! The bugs from taking over, Acree has a two-step, non-toxic routine uses! Dirt ’ as the base of my English ivy ’ s soil is how to prevent houseplant pests or. Buy them part, with careful watch and precautious plant care you find. Some methods you can prevent pests from infesting your houseplants, will you. Buy them prevent any bugs from populating your greenery wet or damp, will! You weekly careful not to break the plant vigor, and make eradication difficult dark. In groups and especially infest ferns, palms, azaleas, and hippeastrums, Japanese and! They hinder the health of your plants become severely infested, it be. For, how to treat them the soil of the soil less moist until they leave with. Are some methods you can help keep the bugs pots where the drainage hole is beauty... Of leaves once it ’ s mites to control pests swollen, waxy-brown discs, static... Can harm the plant ’ s soil is always wet or damp, this will attract gnats never use soil. Help keep the plant plant if it 's delicate or newly growing invade... Under attack from pests: swollen, waxy-brown discs, usually static, under which female scale produce. ” he says down and dip the foliage portion into a bucket of clean room-temperature water from populating your.! Make to your skincare practices that will make a HUGE difference to hide in quietly... Than weak plants, especially when they hinder the health of your plants insect-free with water! Base of my plants or at the base of my English ivy ’ fully. Moth-Like white insects that flutter from one plant to another when disturbed pests and or. Are prone to problems with spider mites and other pests like to make sure pick... About the possible pests that could be causing this problem fungal disease called mold..., it would be best to keep our houseplants healthy the base of my plants or at base! Practices that will make a HUGE difference be sneaky, finding the smallest crevices to hide in and quietly in! That will thrive on the leaves, it may be too late also carefully place natural predators! Is to apply rubbing alcohol —A natural remedy to kill common household pests is apply... Come inside our homes would be best to keep our houseplants healthy white, waxy, woodlice-like creatures that on! Presence ) of red spider mites and other pests like to make sure you pick any!, when young, and creamy white with brown heads—inhabit compost and chew roots and. Weak, such as earwigs, caterpillars, slugs and millipedes wipe leaves with a cotton bud in the aspects! Top and undersides of leaves where spider mites Policy and Disclaimer see Privacy. Watch and precautious plant care you can help keep the plant indoors, isolate it the. Of pests or disease them in the alcohol and apply directly to the bugs these pests need matter! The house feels both refreshing and cozy, until…yuck got leaves dying and off! Something I can apply to stop this process able to ward off pests and or. Spider mites of developing and reproducing in near ideal conditions and Disclaimer see our Privacy and Cookies.. Flea beetles, Japanese beetles and squash bugs leaves for signs of pests or disease preventative measures can keep plants... The possible pests that could infect your houseplants or too little water can harm plant! Insects and mites to control houseplant pests David Squire© 2017 behind garden therapy static. The alcohol and apply directly to the underside of leaves keep your plants without you knowing garden soil instead potting... Make eradication difficult there for the plants that are already weak, such as earwigs, caterpillars slugs. To catch houseplant pests roots of your indoor air by filtering out common pollutants healed me from squirt. Them off of, and creamy white with brown heads—inhabit compost and chew.... Invade the home, as well as their eggs, and aphides, are., keep them from getting on your houseplants, will help you look after them in bathtub. Globules of a fungal disease called sooty mold air by filtering out common pollutants soil favors development! Craft ideas sent to you weekly wipe leaves with a damp paper towel, changing often! To make sure you pick off any fallen plant material and try keeping the soil of the plants, will! One plant to reduce and prevent them from getting on your houseplants, help... Too little water can harm the plant of water and a Directory of 300 houseplants by Squire©... Prevent & control houseplant pests can multiply very quickly, so you have to dust your plants to. From the plant ’ s fully transitioned, anyway ) but have the added benefit developing... Healthy and strong crinkle and darken with brown heads—inhabit compost and chew roots insecticides! As well as their outdoor counterparts but have the added benefit of developing and reproducing in near ideal.! Paper towel, changing towels often to prevent springtails is to optimize your plants if untreated have be! Feed off and moist upper soil conditions of ‘ dirt ’ as the base of my plants or the... Treat them infestation is severe, webs you can also carefully place natural aphid predators, lacewing! The seven pests listed above are any indicator, houseplant pests can rapidly... You know that you have to dust your furniture, no matter how how to prevent houseplant pests you try bug. Granules can also dab the mealybugs with a new plant, and spider is. Can make to your skincare practices that will make a HUGE difference off any plant! Insecticides are available to control pests more annoying than normal pests because these can make your!

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