Pests on leaves... White fuzzy spots and sticky residue

nokiOctober 15, 2012

I first I thought this was some sort of mildew... started to multiply like crazy. How do I take care of this? Soap? Will this spread to other succulents?

S. aubrytaniana was the first plant.

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Here is another plant...

    Bookmark   October 15, 2012 at 11:00PM
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bonsaigai(NY Zone 6)

Hmm. Looks like it could be mealy bug. Is it soft and fuzzy and mushy-red to pink if smashed? Annoyingly fecund, it will spread to pretty much anything.

Either dabbing with alcohol, spraying with horticultural oil, or a systemic with Imidacloprid will get them. You have to be EXTREMELY diligent with the alcohol treatment or it will come back very easily.


    Bookmark   October 16, 2012 at 7:46AM
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Yes. I had these on my Sans before and they are a royal pain! I would definately remove all you see by hand, spray in any crackes, crevices, new leaves, and use a systemic. You may find them below the soil line too. check any nearby......or not so nearby plants too.

    Bookmark   October 16, 2012 at 9:44AM
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bonsaigai(NY Zone 6)

Nasty, nasty, nasty critters. I've been getting them off my Clivia for about two years now. I have to alternate with chemicals ( I HATE using the hard stuff.) to get rid of them. There are some especially resistant strains in the greenhouse industry now. Terrible.


    Bookmark   October 16, 2012 at 10:45AM
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pirate_girl(Zone7 NYC)

Hi Noki:

Highly contagious, these nasty mealy bugs, they can wipe out a Hoya collection fast.

Did you recently buy some new plants & not quarantine them? That's often how they get in.

Pls. move all the infected plants away from others which seem clean, to minimize further spread.

I haven't seen mealies on Sans. before that I recall.

Hey Norma, if you're out there, didn't you used to say that Sans. didn't have pest problems?

    Bookmark   October 16, 2012 at 11:38AM
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Stush2049 Pitts. PA, zone 6

Al from the house plant forum told about a Neam oil and alcohol and soap. One tablespoon Neam oil, one teaspoon soap (Murphy's oil soap) and into a mix of 1/2 and 1/2 water and alcohol in a 1 pint spray bottle. Must use all in one day. It leaves a shine on the leaves. I use it several times in September before bring in all the plants. The Neam oil I purchased from Lowes for about $10 for a pint size bottle. That's enought for a lot of mixes.

    Bookmark   October 16, 2012 at 2:15PM
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Thanks for the help, I seem to have a population explosion now...

Looking closer, most of my thin leaved Sansevieria have the pest down inside the crowns (or whatever the best term is). Hard to remove them. I sprayed "Garden Safe Insecticidal Soap" into the Sans, I hope it slows them. I threw out the yellow edged Sans, maybe a rash decision, but it was a big sloppy plant, I probably can find another.

I can't see any evidence so far of the pest on other plants (Haworthia, Gasteria). Have not seem to attack the more arid, thicker leaved Sans far as I can tell, at least so far.

    Bookmark   October 16, 2012 at 11:59PM
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Michaela(z6+ TN)

Yes, mealy bugs! You can save this plant by taking outside, depotting it, and use a garden hose with spray attachment to forcefully spray the critters off. You especially need to spray all the leaf crevices and the roots as they like dark places to lay their eggs. You will NOT get rid of them by dabbing them with chemical degreasers, or alcohol because these things don't get their eggs. Your infestation appears great, and these things are highly contagious if the leaves touch the leaves of other plants.

You can also use a systemic chemical that when mixed with water is taken up by the roots. These insects suck plant juices and the chemical becomes embedded in the plant cells and kills the insect that way. I have had good luck with "Bayer's Complete Insect killer" with the chemical 'imidacloprid' found in Big Box stores. Use as directed.

    Bookmark   October 17, 2012 at 4:40PM
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