The Q&A Archives: Tomato Plant Pests

Question: I have read that insecticidal soap works to combat white fly and aphids on tomato plants. How is this soap different from regular liquid soap? Also, is this what you would recommend to fight these pests?

Answer: Insecticidal soap is made from the fatty acids of certain plants and animals. The product is effective against soft-bodied insects such as aphids and whiteflies, and is safe to use on most plants. Regular soap can contain degreasers, solvents, and other chemicals that are harmful to plant tissues. Your best defense against those pesky pests is a commercially prepared Insecticidal Soap, used according to label directions. Alternately, you can hose the pests off the plants. Just direct a strong stream of water on all plant parts to dislodge the adults and any eggs. Be sure to spray on a daily basis until you get the population under control.

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