We hate to be the bearer of bad news, but if your once beautiful and green plant is looking sick and quite discoloured, you could have a bad case of spider mites.
Spider mites are a serious problem for your plants but not impossible to eliminate! Here's a few things we've learnt along the way at PlantGirl to give them the flick.
SIGNS OF SPIDER MITES INCLUDE:
- Discolouration on the leaves (caused by the mites sucking all the goodness out of the plant cells...ew...).
- Tiny white specks all over the leaves (often underneath and along the stem).
- Little webs woven around the foliage and stems. Spider mites are tiny (which is how they can go unnoticed for so long) so you need to have a really close look at the leaves to spot them.
- Quarantine the infested plant. The last thing you want is those mites spreading to your other plant babies.
- Clean the plant. Physically remove the mites, hose off in a shower or wipe all of the leaves down thoroughly with a damp cloth.
- Clip away any heavily damaged leaves.
- Treat the plant. You can find lots of pesticide treatments for these guys but it’s always great if you can go natural. Wipe all of the leaves with an eco neem oil solution. You can also create an insecticidal soap to kill the mites off. Continue this each week for a few weeks, until you can't see any more signs of the mites.
- Make it a habit to check your leaves for bugs. Catching these things early always works in your favour.
- Regularly clean your plant leaves.
- Give a preventative neem treatment from time to time.
- Spider mites love dry conditions so you can create extra humidity to keep them at bay.