Answer: Sounds suspiciously like mealy bugs have attacked your plant. Mealy bugs are sucking insects that attach themselves firmly to the stems and leaves of plants. That's why the area is a lighter green when you remove the insect. Usually they can be controlled by wiping them off with a damp Q-Tip. If infestation is more severe, you can dip the Q-tip into rubbing alcohol and wipe off all affected areas of your plant. Then wash the plant in a mild solution of soapy water (a gentle soap such as Ivory dish liquid works well). Rinse all of the soap off. There are also insecticides formulated especially for houseplants. Be sure to read and follow the label directions. Mealy bugs will travel so keep a close eye on all your other houseplants for any signs of infestation.
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