The Q&A Archives: Bugs in Ficus Soil

Question: I'm having trouble with my ficus tree. It has these little tiny white or silver bugs that live in the soil. I have tried several different products but to no avail. There has to be something out there that will kill them. If you do reccomend something, please be specific.

Answer: I suspect they may be fungus gnats, but in any case you could try a soil drench of insecticidal soap such as Safer's or of a product called Gnatrol being careful to follow the label instructions. Additional steps to take are to cover the top of the soil with a thin layer of sand and to be sure the soil is not kept overly wet. (Fungus gnats like soaking wet soil and will not be able to breed if the top layer of soil is kept dry -- hence the fast draining sand layer.) Alternatively, you might wish to take a sample to your County Extension for a definite identification of the pest and suggested controls. Their telephone number is 825-1701. Good luck with your ficus!

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