No body like bugs on their potted houseplants. There are different kinds that are attracted to indoor and outdoor potted plants. In this post we are talking about the little white ones called mealybugs.
Mealybugs are one of the most common pests that can infect your potted plants and flowers. If you are growing them indoors or out you have probably seen them before. They look like tiny little sesame seeds and they like to hang out in the cracks of your plants. A favorite spot is where the leaves met the stem. You could see a white web looking net that is a trait also. If not treated right away you will eventually have an issue with all of your planted house plants. These things spread.
While there are many products on the market that will kill them we recommend trying a q-tip soaked in alcohol. When and if you first see them on your potted succulents or plants, move fast to quarantine the infected plant. Dab the leaves and bugs with the q-tip and wipe off the webs. Once treatment should do the job but keep the potted plant in a separate place until you are sure. It really depends on how bad the infestation really is.
Now you are probably asking if the alcohol hurts the plants and the answer is NO. It doesn't burn the leaves or damage the plant in any way. Now if you want to error on the side of caution just dab in a small area first to see how it affects the plant. It will not stop the bugs but can still be a good pretest. We have heard of other ways to remove them but with experience we have found this to be the best.
We all know how frustrating it can be to bring a lovely potted houseplant into the home and then find yourself fighting houseplant pests. The last think you want to do is spend your time fighting those bugs all winter long.
Once the season changes and winter approaches, houseplants go dormant. This will make them more prone to pest attacks. The best way to approach this issue is to follow a few easy steps which can help your potted houseplants and control this pest issue.
Keep your containers and potting mix clean and sterile. If you are using a pot that has already been used then run it thru the dishwasher. And, never recycle potting soil from another plant. Always start with new potting mix. Check the plants when you purchase them and make sure they aren't already infested. If you find any then wash them with a mild soap and water. If you find that later after planted you potted houseplant, it gets bugs then move it away from your other plants so it doesn't affect them also.
Don't let the plants get dusty or cobwebs. These things will attract spider mites. Use a damp paper towel or soft cloth to wipe the leaves off on a regular basis.
So as you can see it's not as tragic as you may think. And please don't just toss the poor houseplant out without trying these steps. It's a situation that nobody wants but one that can easily be dealt with.
Now that the weather has improved and we are getting excited about playing in our yards and garden areas, we don't want you to forget the un-welcomed intrudes that tag along with the nicer weather.
Mosquitoes and knats are every ones worse enemy when you want to be outside enjoying your day. There are lots of bug sprays on the market that work but when you want to get away from the chemicals we suggest you try to pot some of these plants. Not only are they lovely but they work - naturally!
Citronella - is a beautiful perennial grass that emits a very strong odor that bugs don't like. This plant is much more effective than the other citronella products you see on the market these days. Everything from sprays to candles. It's super easy to grow and pot and can get tall up to 6 feet. Use your decorative containers so you can move them around when you entertain.
Lemon Balm - A member of the mint family it's very easy to pot and great for beginners. This hard plant resists dry weather so it's perfect for desert climates. Since it tends to be invasive it's better to plant it is a generous sized planter that is lovely and functional.
Catnip - rounds out of top 3. This plant is very effective in repelling mosquitoes and our feline friends will love you for it. Grow this plant in a large planter pot so that you cats won't be able to roll around in it and crush everything.
Consider a few tips when potting plants for around your home and garden areas.
1. Keep soil clean and correct. There are different types of soil that can be purchased from your local garden center. Make sure you match the correct soil with the types of plants, flowers, or veggies that you are going to be potting. Good garden soil actually can deter pests.
2. Buy pest and disease seeds. When buying seeds, search for letters like V.F.N or T after the name of a seed; they indicate the problems to which the seeds is most resistant. If using grown plants make sure there are no weeds being transferred into the new pot. They often harbor insects and disease organisms.
3. Decaying plant matter is prime breeding ground for fungus, insects and disease, so remove faded blooms, fallen leaves and weeds is key. Every time you visit your garden area or sit next to your potted plants, bring a small bucket and take a minute to tidy up.
4. If you find you must use insecticides, try to use natural products. They will break down quickly in your garden planters when exposed to air and light. Be sure to read and follow the directions because these products can be harmful if use improperly.