How To Control Mealybugs On Hibiscus? Top 5 Tricks
Mealybugs are not less than a villain. Yes, you heard it, right villain! In the beautiful relationship of gardener and plants, they act as a foe. And it would not be wrong if I name them MOGAMBO! Today will understand, How To Control Mealybugs On Hibiscus?
The name is just so catchy, man! And yes, just like Mogambo, mealybugs are scary and retarded at the same time! Haha.
We all know the dialogue here, ‘Mogambo khush Hua.’
But, wait what! Unlike, movies Mr. India will not come to save your plants. This only happens in the reel world, sad but bitter truth! Hey, don’t be upset I’m here to help you out. In the real world, you are the hero of your life!
However, by following all the steps properly you can save your plants from mealybugs attack. And brag about yourself.
Last but not least, Whether or not you receive an award in a Filmfare but, you will be rewarded by numerous no. of blooms of buds and a healthy plant. And eventually, get rid of unwanted mealybugs by knowing the ” TOP 5 SECRETS TO CONTROL MEALYBUGS ON HIBISCUS”
It was just an Introduction to our villain Mealybugs.
MEALYBUGS ARE NOT ONLY THE COMMON SAP-FEEDING PESTS BUT THEY’RE ALSO KNOWN FOR VIRUS TRANSMISSION.
Let’s understand, to control Mealybugs in hibiscus in detail:
“Kyunki, Picture Abhi Baki hai mere dost“.
1. How to get rid of mealybugs?
- Mealybugs are unarmored scale insects. They prey on the plant’s vital sap by inserting their needle-like mouthpart (stylet) and leave their hosts sabotaged.
- To keep mealybugs at bay, spray your plants once a week with a solution of neem oil in water.
- If you coat all plant surfaces, the neem oil will slow or stop feeding on your plants by a good sort of pests.
- Also, the oil coats any eggs or crawlers and can smother them.
- Since mealybugs and ants have a symbiotic relationship, it’s also essential to eliminate ants if you spy any around your mealies.
- Keeping the ants at bay reduces the chance that they’ll be protected and cared for, which makes it easier to eliminate them entirely.
2. Where Do Mealy Bugs Come From?
- They usually grow naturally in warm and humid climates.
- Whereas, in cold climates, mealybugs are less common and seen more in the spring and summer.
- They overwinter themselves as nymphs and eggs and spreads through previously infested plants when the temperature warms up.
- Ants spread the mealybugs infestation as well.
3. Ants Spread the Mealybugs Infestation
- There’s a relationship between mealybugs and ants.
- These pests are regularly farmed by ants who provide them shelter and protection and keep them clean. In return, the ants get to consume honeydew, a sweet secretion of the mealybugs.
- While not all mealybugs are cared for during this fashion, many species are often. Some of the most commonly farmed mealybugs include the pineapple mealybug, citrus mealybug, and the pink hibiscus mealybug.
- Mealybugs, like aphids and other scale insects, prey on the sap of the plants and excrete honeydew.
- Honeydew is the top food source for ants, and that’s why they protect mealybugs from predators and transport them to other plants. Thus, increasing the infestation. Also, this honeydew excretion promotes the sooty mold fungus on the affected areas of plants.
4. How To Identify Them
- However, Mealybugs are interested in plants with high nitrogen levels, and unfortunately, that tends to incorporate most of our prized garden plants. So what can you do to get rid of them? Here’s a list of some of the best ways to eliminate them.
- When these bugs start growing in number during a particular area, they develop a wax-like white, powdery coating upon themselves that shields them and protects their eggs.
- This covering makes them appear as if bulks of cotton.
- Also, a plant with mealybugs feeding thereon looks malformed and weak.
- Yellowing leaves, dropping flowers, buds, and fruits can be the symptoms.
5. Where To Locate Mealybugs?
- Mealybugs can be found on any part of the plants, but they prefer the tender new growth and grow on the concealed areas.
- Look for them around stem joints, under the leaves and barks, in crevices, and other less exposed parts of the plant.
6. Which Plants Are Most Affected?
- These pesky pests affect the spread of vegetation, especially tropical and subtropical plants.
- However, your greenhouse plants, houseplants, summer annuals, ornamentals like hibiscus and gardenia, and fruit trees like citrus, grape, guava, and mango are most targeted.
7. How to control mealybugs on hibiscus?
15 steps to process to control of mealybugs in Hibiscus plant
- First and foremost, be watchful while planting. Make sure you don’t use already infected plantlets or potting soil.
- Hence, Inspect your plants on a daily basis as spotting bugs as early as possible is extremely helpful. Use water spurts to get rid of preparatory infestations.
- When you see mealybugs, act immediately.
- For instance, Prune blossoms if necessary.
- Don’t overwater or keep your plant wet. As stated above, these bugs tend to breed faster in moist, humid conditions.
- Pruning can also help to eliminate these cotton mass insects. Wipe the leaves and petioles that look infected, or simply pluck them off. This will help control their spreading.
- Add 1 1/2 tablespoon of Neem oil, 1 tablespoon of mild liquid soap in a liter of lukewarm water. Fill this solution during a spray bottle and spray this on the affected plants. This treatment can eradicate the mealybugs and the other quite pest infestation or fungal growth, gradually, after a couple of uses. The neem oil insecticide is natural, highly effective, and safe.
- Insecticidal soap or any liquid soap that is free from scents and additives that can harm the plant may be used to wash the mealybugs away. Mix 2 tablespoons of soap (increase the amount further according to the severity of infestation) in a gallon of water and spray.
- Minor outbreaks can also be cleared with some alcohol on q-tips. Furthermore, a mixture of lotion with soapy water is often sprayed on the plants. The recipe is here to follow!
- Insects that eat mealybugs can function as the ‘guardians’ of your garden. Ladybugs, pirate bugs, lacewings, etc. are all very helpful for protection against mealybugs.
Remember Plant Ladybug attractor plants in your garden like fennel, dill, cosmos, etc. Ladybugs help to control Mealybugs as well as other pests in your garden
12. Quarantine affected plants – confirm they’re not touching the other plants and treat with neem oil spray.
13. However, Carefully observe the affected Hibiscus. Check it a day and use a cotton swab dipped in alcohol to exterminate any mealybugs which will reappear.
14. Although, If you continue to see mealybugs after every week, treat them with neem oil spray again.
15. Keep the Hibiscus plant in quarantine for several weeks. When you no longer see any sign of mealybugs, you can put it back in your collection.
Here, we end the remedies to control our villain Mealybugs on Hibiscus!
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Green luck to you guys!