Small black bugs on Orange Tree soil.

RanchoJuly 9, 2012

Hi there!

I have a small Valencia orange tree and a dwarf navel orange tree in 22" pots. They're both about 3 feet tall and producing fruit (even though it's common place to find fruit in the dirt every morning). Lately I've noticed (I have to look very closely) these tiny black bugs cruising around the soil and the pot (not really on the plant itself). They MAY be winged creatures, but I'm not sure. They're smaller than a mosquito -- probably 1/4 - 1/2 the size. The majority of them are on the Valencia orange tree soil, but I've also noticed them on the navel pot and a few here and there on my other plants.

Like I said, they are hard to see unless I'm looking closely at the soil, but there seems to be a TON of them.

My question is... Does this ring a bell with anyone as to what these might be? Should I be concerned with these bugs and if so, what's the best way to get rid of them?

I water my orange trees once every 2-3 days usually. I use Miracle grow soil and organic citrus fertilizer.

Thanks in advance for any help!

-A worried gardener in Los Angeles

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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

Of course, this will be a WAG (wild arse guess) but whenever I hear anyone talk about lots of little black or dark critters in the soil, I think of springtails. They would be more common in a peaty MiracleGro potting mix as opposed to something coarser in texture.

Do you notice these little things mostly when you water?

    Bookmark   July 9, 2012 at 10:37PM
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blazeaglory(10 SZ22/24 OC Ca)

I would suggest fungus GNATS. I find them in parts of my moist pots and soil. Plump little bugs with clear wings almost too invisible and small to see. When they are crawling (as opposed to flying) you can barely see the wings. The gnats in the pic are DEAD.

    Bookmark   July 10, 2012 at 1:40AM
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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

I can't say that I 've ever noticed 'a ton' of adult fungus gnats hanging around in the soil....but maybe we need to hear more about the behavior of these critters from rancho. Like has he been bombarded with annoying little gnats flying all over the place? It wouldn't be the first time that we didn't find out all the details.

But what I want to know, blaze, is how the HECK you managed to collect so many? Lol

    Bookmark   July 10, 2012 at 4:02PM
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blazeaglory(10 SZ22/24 OC Ca)

I googled all of them..haha

    Bookmark   July 10, 2012 at 4:40PM
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blazeaglory(10 SZ22/24 OC Ca)

Funny I was thinking the same thing about how the heck that person got all those GNATS! (forgot to post)

    Bookmark   July 10, 2012 at 4:41PM
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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

lolol....that's funny...you devil.

    Bookmark   July 10, 2012 at 10:18PM
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tokeel13

Did you ever identify those critters, tiny black bug, some with wings. Termites,? Please, if you now know what these are I would like to know, joined gw just to message you Rancho/Anyone.

    Bookmark   February 10, 2014 at 10:08PM
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