Return to the Cacti & Succulents Forum | Post a Follow-Up

 o
HELP! I have spider mites!

Posted by Indiana.Matt 6a Indiana (My Page) on
Sat, Dec 1, 12 at 21:32

I just found a two-spotted spider might on my Pleiospilos nelii Split Rock. How can I get rid of them for good? This is a new plant for me. I got it Nov 16th, 2012, so I would think the mites were on the plant when I got it.

What should I do?

Thanks,
Indiana.Matt
Matthew


Follow-Up Postings:

 o
RE: HELP! I have spider mites!

Time for chemical warfare. Mites are hard shelled spiders and are harder to kill than most insects. If you don't want to go chemical, I don't know what the options are. If you want effective chemical treatment, go to a good greenhouse/nursery and get a miticide. If the label does not specifically mention mites, it probably won't work.

The good news is you don't have to treat it NOW, like you do if you find scale or the Spider Mites with the webs. Like those problems though, you should quarantine the plant.


 o
RE: HELP! I have spider mites!

I have only found one mite so far, I just spent a few minutes looking for more, but didn't see any. I'll keep looking for more. I did kill the one. I have small stone around the plant. Should I take it all off so I can see the under side of the leaves?

The one mite i killed was crawling around on the top of the plant.

Thanks,
Indiana.Matt
Matthew


 o
RE: HELP! I have spider mites!

not now? no no absolutely attack them right NOW! smash what you can see, they do make webs just not noticable until fully infested, and are actually quite soft...and easily smashed, just too numerous and small for that to work well, you can use several non chem treatments, neem, Pyrethrum, not on your split rock tho, most things will be too harsh for its tender skin.

Theres a recipe on the indoor pot growing sites,mostly vingar and lemon juice, it works great but wash it of or it will burn em too.

Ill always go back to the no pest strips for mites, I havnt found another thing that will actually eradicate those little bastards, they ride wind currents, mature in 3-9 days, reproduce like crazy, and can build a hard little shell when conditions arent favorable, it protects them for some time. You can find them at any big box store, cheap too!

I wouldnt be so quick to blame the split rock or the place you acquired it, there were record spider mite damage to crops all though KY OH and most of their neighboring states, you could actually have thousands of them hiding in a small collection and never see them, if you found one...well you know...

They like it hot and dry too, much like most succulents, troublesome...

best of luck
nip em in the bud now, before you awake to a writhing mass that was once a treasured plant...


 o
RE: HELP! I have spider mites!

Forbid and Fluromite are both excellent miticides and are pretty much mite/white fly specific. I don't like using insecticides, especially a broad spectrum insecticide. I have resorted to one for Broad mites in the past and was very happy with Forbid.


 o
RE: HELP! I have spider mites!

This is from a search for "spider mite insecticides" for what it's worth.

Chemical Control

Spider mites frequently become a problem after applying insecticides. Such outbreaks are commonly a result of the insecticide killing off the mites� natural enemies but also occur when certain insecticides stimulate mite reproduction. For example, spider mites exposed to carbaryl (Sevin) in the laboratory have been shown to reproduce faster than untreated populations. Carbaryl, some organophosphates, and some pyrethroids apparently also favor spider mites by increasing the level of nitrogen in leaves. Insecticides applied during hot weather usually appear to have the greatest effect, causing dramatic spider mite outbreaks within a few days.

If a treatment for mites is necessary, use selective materials, preferably insecticidal soap or insecticidal oil. Both petroleum-based horticultural oils and plant-based oils such as neem, canola, or cottonseed oils are acceptable. There are also a number of plant extracts formulated as acaricides (a pesticide that kills mites) that exert an effect on spider mites. These include garlic extract, clove oil, mint oils, rosemary oil, cinnamon oil and others. Don�t use soaps or oils on water-stressed plants or when temperatures exceed 90�F. These materials may injure some plants, so check labels and/or test them out on a portion of the foliage several days before applying a full treatment. Oils and soaps must contact mites to kill them, so excellent coverage, especially on the undersides of leaves, is essential, and repeat applications may be required.

Sulfur sprays can be used on some vegetables, fruit trees, and ornamentals. This product will burn cucur�bits and other plants in some cases. Don�t use sulfur unless it has been shown to be safe for that plant in your locality. Use liquid products such as sulfur and potash soap combinations (e.g., Safer Brand 3-in-1 Garden Spray) rather than sulfur dusts, which drift easily and can be breathed in. Don�t use sulfur if temperatures exceed 90�F, and don�t apply sulfur within 30 days of an oil spray. Sulfur is a skin irritant and eye and respiratory hazard, so always wear appropriate protective clothing.


 o
RE: HELP! I have spider mites!

  • Posted by nil13 z21 Mt. Washington L (My Page) on
    Sun, Dec 2, 12 at 11:45

i must not have gotten the memo. When did neem oil and pyrethrum stop being chemicals?


 o
RE: HELP! I have spider mites!

  • Posted by nil13 z21 Mt. Washington L (My Page) on
    Sun, Dec 2, 12 at 11:57

i hope I'm just reading that wrong.


 o
RE: HELP! I have spider mites!

http://landscaping.about.com/od/pestcontrol/p/neem_oil.htm

similar results for pyrethrum...

While i dont like or use either, they are different than the other chems mentioned...I mean really the definition of a chemical is pretty broad...

Im again going to chat no pest strip... when you compare the cost and the fact that all you do is hang something up, vs. multiple sprayings of some pretty gnarly, hard to acquire stuff, its just a no brainer to me...not to mention most of those sprays will ruin the look of most succulents... plus the strips actually iradicates them, most stuff will just kill them...not kill them all...


 o
RE: HELP! I have spider mites!

When did neem oil and pyrethrum stop being chemicals?

Memo : Both mentioned items are found in natural growing plants. Seeming as both where never chemicals sense day one of there discovery might explain why you never got a memo.


 o
RE: HELP! I have spider mites!

grabme
are you actually talking about Fly strips? the sticky hanging ribbons,,?
are mites actually attracted to those? this is very interesting,,,
i hung up a cpl for like a Mnth before a single 'gnat' ever even got stuck on one,,,
so im really curious about this? in what proximity to the plant should it hang?
..they would venture from their web to the strip?
Thanks


 o
RE: HELP! I have spider mites!

Lots of options! Thanks everyone for your input.

I looked up the No Pest Strips online. If I understand them right. The pests don't stick to them. The strips let off something into the air that kills the pests.

How safe are these strips to live with in one's house? I'm not sure if I like the idea of breathing in something that kills the pests. I could see maybe using them in a greenhouse, one doesn't usually live in a greenhouse...personal exposure would be minimal.

I have also read about using soap with water in a spray bottle. Does this method have any affect?

So far I still have only seen the one mite (I killed that one). My Pleiospilos nelii Split Rock plant isn't very large and there aren't really any good places for the mites to hide.

Does anyone know if the mites could live in the soil at the base of my plant?

Thanks again for all the input.

Indiana.Matt
Matthew


 o
RE: HELP! I have spider mites!

  • Posted by nil13 z21 Mt. Washington L (My Page) on
    Mon, Dec 3, 12 at 2:08

um mrlike2u, you may want to pick up a chemistry textbook or the msds for pyrethrum for that matter. the natural origin is completely irrelevant to the question of whether a substance is a chemical. neem oil, pyrethrum, the chysanthemum used to make the pyrethrum, heck even water are all chemicals, for that matter the person typing this is a big chemical bag filled with chemicals.


 o
RE: HELP! I have spider mites!

You don't want the "no pest strip" but a sticky trap. They are the same idea as those hanging fly traps. They don't use any poisons that I am aware of. I use them for fungus gnats and white flies. I've never heard of them being used for spider mites but it wouldn't hurt to try. The ones I use are yellow and about the size of an index card. You can also make your own using yellow cardstock. You spread a mix of vaseline and white glue on them then hang them near the infested plants.

Here is a link that might be useful: yellow sticky traps


 o
RE: HELP! I have spider mites!

karyn1,

We use the yellow cards in the greenhouse where I work. I might be able to get one from my boss and see if that helps.

Thanks,
Indiana.Matt
Matthew


 o
RE: HELP! I have spider mites!


To Everyone Who Has Posted,

I would like to thank those who have given me advice on my problem.

I would also like to express my disappointment to those who would rather bicker about chemicals than answer my question. All I wanted was some suggestions on how to fix my problem.

Please do not comment to my post unless you have a good suggestion or answer to my question. I will research your suggestions and chose the one that I think will work best for my situation.

Indiana.Matt
Matthew


 o
RE: HELP! I have spider mites!

  • Posted by nil13 z21 Mt. Washington L (My Page) on
    Mon, Dec 3, 12 at 12:54

I'm sorry you feel that way Matt, but you aren't the only person who is going to read these threads. Some of us believe that erroneous information needs to be corrected straight away lest it become accepted information.


 o
RE: HELP! I have spider mites!

Matt,

You might want to get some time here before you make such an obnoxious request. That's a good suggestion!


 o
RE: HELP! I have spider mites!

Thanks for that bit of red text, matt, semantics, all semantics...
chem�i�cal (km-kl)
adj.
1. Of or relating to chemistry.
2. Of or relating to the properties or actions of chemicals.
n.
1. A substance with a distinct molecular composition that is produced by or used in a chemical process.
2. A drug, especially an illicit or addictive one.

I think that covers most things on the periodic table...

anyway the no pest strip is air borne poison, not a sticky trap, I hate using them in living areas and now that i have a family i dont do it...I doubt they would end up on a sticky trap, but they are cheap why not try one?

The only reason i keep sayin no pest strip...is experience...I have seen those 2 spotted mites literally turn plants into one big grey spider web, ive seen them in feeding balls on my elephant ears, feeding balls as big as a marble... they can explode in a matter of weeks and decimate your all your plants just as fast...

Yes could be in the soil, or on the soil, like i said they have the ability to grow a hard shell and sit for weeks, re emerging when they feel the time is right.

I come from a strong ag. background while I may put my foot in my mouth alot, I do have an idea what im talking about here, these guys are my nemisis, they are a breeze to kill, just touch them, but to eliminate them...HA! good luck
the fact that they are a tropical species that can do literally millions upon millions of dollars worth of damage to crops in temperate climates says alot about them, not much else does that, I could be wrong but they are considered the #1 threat to soybeans and corn... they put thousands of acres of it on "rescue status" this year, that means if you dont rescue your crops from them, the crops are toast.

no pest strips are the standard for the indoor pot industry, these guys are smoking their plants, they dont wanna smoke nasty chems...I know its easy to say they dont have a clue, but I assure you these guys do have a clue, their pocketbook depends on it, you can read over and over on their sites about how nothin else fully eliminates spider mite populations, except those stupid no pest strips, when I had to start fighting mites I tried so many expensive sprays from people in the greenhouse industry, they all worked, none wiped em out...none of em, even the stuff that was 100s of dollars a bottle. This year ive spotted a few mites on my EEs thanks to the favorable conditions this summer, ill be adding a few no pest strips to my GH and just watch em dry up...

the vinegar and baking soda recipe works the best, intsant death and it washes the webs away too, but it will only kill mites directly contacted with the spray

Just keep an eye out for more, hopefully you wont need to make any other steps


 o
RE: HELP! I have spider mites!

Maybe im just in that kind of mood today but i found his request perfectly reasonable...do we need to be here for years to get full membership? or rights to post?

You would be hard pressed to find more knowledgeable, helpful members than the ones trying to help in this thread...I dont mean to ridicule anyone, but this is a public FREE forum.

The original poster asked people to stay on topic, not spit and spat about whats a chem.

Really how unreasonable is that?


 o
RE: HELP! I have spider mites!

Posted by cactusmcharris 4 / Interior BC (My Page) on
Mon, Dec 3, 12 at 13:12
Matt,
You might want to get some time here before you make such an obnoxious request. That's a good suggestion!

That's the kind of post that chases people away! There is a small group on this forum that think they have all the answers! And for your info I've been on here for many, many years! When I move or change my email I re-register.


 o
RE: HELP! I have spider mites!

Grab,

I saw it as an attempt to limit discussion. I'm not one for necessarily sticking to the topic (although I usually answer a question eventually), but to tell others to stick to the topic struck me as something undesirable and rude, especially when assistance was being offered.


 o
RE: HELP! I have spider mites!

Ron,

It's unfortunate your grumpy bone continues to give trouble to you. While I don't have all the answers and know of no such group as you speak, I can definitely say that I (1) answer a lot of questions here, as I can, and some I shouldn't I daresay (2) longevity alone doth make not poster's worth here. My reference there seems to have completely gone over your head. Remind me please what exactly you contribute here.


 o
RE: HELP! I have spider mites!

To Everyone,
I really do appreciate all the help I receive on the forums, and I always make sure to thank everyone for there input. I also understand the need to correct info if it is incorrect and appreciate that too.

To grabmebymyhandle,
Thanks for the info on the no pest strips. Do you think I could put the plant in a clear plastic tub with a no pest strip? I don't think I want to just hang one in my house.

Thanks,
Indiana.Matt
Matthew


 o
RE: HELP! I have spider mites!

Matt,

Having them in something that restricts to nothing any air movement wouldn't be the best way to go.


 o
RE: HELP! I have spider mites!

cactusmcharris,

Ya, I wondered about that. I wasn't sure how long it would take to kill everything. If I had to keep it in there for, say, a few days, I know that would be too long without fresh air or circulation.

I did get a few of the yellow sticky cards today from work. I thought I would set one out to see if anything is attracted to it. I know it wont really get rid of them, but I'm hoping to see if there are more of them with it.

Thanks for your advice.
Indiana.Matt
Matthew


 o
RE: HELP! I have spider mites!

A few days isn't a problem, I should think, all things being equal. You don't want it to be too warm where the plant is for those few days.


 o
RE: HELP! I have spider mites!

yea hes right dont bag it up, we are having a bit of mighty nice weather here , matt, i wonder if you have a garage or a shed you could maybe put the plant and the no pest strip in...

Really it sounds like it may not be a good option for you right now, I think your best bet at this point is too just be on the look out for more, if you pay lots of attention you can make sure if you have more, if not then no need to worry, problem solved...
If they pop back up you can likely control them til spring, it will be much easier to tackle then.
Spider mites love it hot and dry, just like your house, so do split rocks, dont kill your plant but if you can make conditions less favorable for the bugs it will REALLY help.
That was what rescued all the crops I mentioned before, not spray of any kind...


 o
RE: HELP! I have spider mites!

cactusmcharris

And you are very ignorant and rude!! And don't answer you've succeeded in chasing me away. Grow up and get some manners!


 o
RE: HELP! I have spider mites!

Ok, I am confused...Are you sure it is a spider mite you saw? I have never seen one without a magnifying glass, and most people I know of can't see them with the naked eye until it's too late and they have already begun to spin their webs.

Can you take a picture of it just to make sure it is a mite for us to see. If you can see them, then maybe we can?

All I do is use a good safer or insecticidal soap, making sure to soak every crevice and under the leaves for a period of a month once week, being consistent is the key, and they are usually gone by spring or at least kept under control for the duration of winter.

Oils can tend to discolor certain leaves of certain succulents which I am leery of, but which works like magic on all my other plants.

I do know that most chemical systemic control products only cause an explosion in mites. I found that out the hard way and never again.

Good luck

Mike:-)


 o
RE: HELP! I have spider mites!

Ok, I am confused...Are you sure it is a spider mite you saw? I have never seen one without a magnifying glass, and most people I know of can't see them with the naked eye until it's too late and they have already begun to spin their webs.

Can you take a picture of it just to make sure it is a mite for us to see. If you can see them, then maybe we can?

All I do is use a good safer or insecticidal soap, making sure to soak every crevice and under the leaves for a period of a month once week, being consistent is the key, and they are usually gone by spring or at least kept under control for the duration of winter.

Oils can tend to discolor certain leaves of certain succulents which I am leery of, but which works like magic on all my other plants.

I do know that most chemical systemic control products only cause an explosion in mites. I found that out the hard way and never again.

Good luck

Mike:-)


 o
RE: HELP! I have spider mites!

As Mike said mites are small enough to not see and miss and usually see the mite web first. There habit is to feed from the underside of foliage leaves Perhaps a bit confusing cause I dont think of the succulent ends of a Pleiospilos as " leaves" and would also suggest a reliable insecticidal soap be used thinking a pest strip might cause damage VIA get stuck on the succulent ends of your Pleiospilos.


 o
RE: HELP! I have spider mites!

Good point! to see one is quite a feat, maybe you dont have mites at all!

im crossin my fingers thats the one


 o
RE: HELP! I have spider mites!

One good reminder to me was the use of vinegar spray. I have been spraying my (winter-overed) pepper plants with alcohol ever week for 'pink aphid' control. ugh. hate breathing the alcohol..... also the vinegar is cheaper ! Sorry Matt..... wanted everyone to know .


 o Post a Follow-Up

Please Note: Only registered members are able to post messages to this forum.

    If you are a member, please log in.

    If you aren't yet a member, join now!


Return to the Cacti & Succulents Forum

Information about Posting

  • You must be logged in to post a message. Once you are logged in, a posting window will appear at the bottom of the messages. If you are not a member, please register for an account.
  • Posting is a two-step process. Once you have composed your message, you will be taken to the preview page. You will then have a chance to review your post, make changes and upload photos.
  • After posting your message, you may need to refresh the forum page in order to see it.
  • Before posting copyrighted material, please read about Copyright and Fair Use.
  • We have a strict no-advertising policy!
  • If you would like to practice posting or uploading photos, please visit our Test forum.
  • If you need assistance, please Contact Us and we will be happy to help.


Learn more about in-text links on this page here