whitefly and lantana

dew80(z7 TX)May 17, 2007

I read in one of the messages that lantana attracts whiteflies. Last summer I had a huge problem with whiteflies and tried every method for controll without success. I do have lot of lantana in my backyard. They are lovely to see flower so profusely and are quite tough in this desert weather. If people have had luck controlling whiteflies by getting rid of lantana I am willing to sacrifice these plants. I hate those flies as they damage everything else from roses to tomatoes and other vegies. And when you have such heavy infestation you sure do not feel like growing and eating any herbs loaded with whitefly eggs under the aromatic leaves.

Whiteflies have started now and I have started spraying but I am dreading the invasion my garden suffered last summer.

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I have crape myrtles, which attract whiteflies. I spray them with malathion early in the spring as recomended by a gardening expert on the local news channel. I spray the trees as soon as they start to bud leave while the tree is still somewhat bare. And I spray it like I did'nt pay for it. Lots and lots.

    Bookmark   May 18, 2007 at 1:11PM
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I've seen mixed advise on Lantana and other white fly attractors.

Do they attract and keep whiteflys away from veggies as the Lantana is more desireable, or..

Do they attract more whiteflys to the area and increase whiteflys on veggies?

Maybe it depends how far they are from veggies?


    Bookmark   May 23, 2007 at 2:15PM
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Repeated use of Malathion or any single pesticide to control white flies may cause them to build immunity. They reproduce rapidly and if all are not killed by the application they pass on the resistance to the next generations.
For several years now, we farmers have been controlling white flies with "Insect Growth Regulators" or IGRs. These IGRs work by preventing the insect from maturing into the reproduction stage, making them steril. I do not know if these are available to the residential gardener. There are only two different IGRs for white flies and to deter immunity they can only each be used once per season.
Prior to the introduction of the IGRs a plethora of ways were used to control them. The harshest was the application of a weekly spray of a mixture of several different pesticides. This was expencive and offered diminishing control. Even with the rotation they developed immunity. And this killed all the benificial insects. Another method was to spray the plants with soap and water, and occasionally spray the whiteflies with fish oil, I think to repell them or make their wings sticky (not certain). The soap and water washed the eggs off the plant and removed some of the residue. The soap and water is what is recomended for gardens. I used a mild liquid dish detergent, in a hand held sprayer. Focusing on the underside of the leaves where the residue, eggs and flies hide. This was not difficult in my small garden. Another less used method is the release of benificial insects that eat them. This can be effective, but may be expencive. As well as there is no way to prevent them from flieing away. They would also benifit the rest of your home and garden, by eating mosquitoes and other pests.
As for removing lantana to prevent white flies from being attracted? I do not know. And like the other poster said, they may draw them away from the other plants in the yard and garden. The white fly population is not restricted to your yard. The case is they ussually reproduce upwind and you will benifit from control measures that your neibors take.
The IGRs broke the cycle of the white fies here. In the last two years we have not sprayed any fields for them. By not killing the benificials in the early season, they and the neibors spraying, have kept them below the threshold or fly count that would trigger a spray. This season we will see.

    Bookmark   June 7, 2007 at 2:20AM
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