The Q&A Archives: pests

Question: How can I get rid of something on my shrub that looks like a gob of cotton. When I touch it it gets my hands red?

Answer: I'm not sure what the insect pest might be. Spittle bugs make a foamy substance; mealy bugs look like tufts of cotton, and spider mites can turn your hands red but they don't make a cottony gob - however they do spin tiny little webs. So, I'm guessing there are spidermites in your shrub. Insecticidal soap will control them, as will a strong stream of water from the hose. Just hose them off your plant. If they return, control them with Insecticidal soap sprays. Good luck with your landscape!

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