The Q&A Archives: Failing hibiscus plants

Question: On my hibiscus, there is a white, soft roundish moving critter. It seems to leave a white residue. The plants are almost totally demolished. Defoliation has occurred and gnarly looking small flowers are blooming. Is there any hope for them or should I just destroy the plants. Thank you

Answer: There's a pest called mealy bug that can colonize stems and if the population is large enough, can kill the plant. There's also a pest called cottony scale. It, too, can kill a plant. Both are difficult to control so if replacing the plant is an option, that's what I'd do!

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