Sometimes big problems come in teeny tiny sizes.
Spider mites are tiny web-spinning bugs that eat sap from the bottom of leaves. They are super hard to see, because they’re only about the size of a grain of pepper! As tiny as they are, it’s amazing the HUGE amount of damage they can cause. If leaves of your plants look yellowed and have tiny webbing between them, you might have spider mites.
Since spider mites are so itty-bitty, you really have to make sure that they’re the main culprits for your plant problems. Here’s the best way to find out if these tiny terrors are holding your plant hostage:
- Hold a sheet of white paper under an unhealthy branch
- Hit the branch and see what comes out
- If tiny red, yellow, green, brown, red, or black specs fall on your paper and begin to crawl around, you have spider mites
Spider Mites like dry, dusty conditions. Spraying your plants’ leaves or needles with water or hosing down garden walkways and other dry, dusty spots will make these small monsters unhappy! Thus, making them relocate. You’ll also want to clean up any extra debris around trees and plants, all the extra material makes spider mites feel right at home. If you pick it up, you’ll remove some of the conditions they favor.
Treatment of spider mites will usually require 2 treatments, 10 days apart using 2 different products. Spray Acephate and Orthene on your plants and you should end your spider mite problem. Rotation of products is important in the success of treating spider mite infestations.