White Fly Problem - Knowledgebase Question

Woodland, CA
Question by galemoore0
March 24, 1998
I have a major problem with white flies. They have totally destroyed my vegetable garden for the last three years. How do I get rid of them for good? I have tried spraying plants with insecticidal soap, but they keep coming back. Can you help?


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Answer from NGA
March 24, 1998

0

Whiteflies can be real pests. Insecticidal soaps are effective, but you need to saturate both the tops and the undersides of the leaves to get the adults, nymphs and eggs. It often takes multiple sprays to get the population down to a manageable size. There are predacious wasps that feed on whiteflies, so if you use a chemical, you'll kill the beneficial wasps as well. Try hosing your plants off with plain water every few days, being thorough and hitting all plant parts with the water. Or, you can make yellow sticky traps that will attract the whiteflies but not harm the beneficial insects. Take bright yellow cardboard or index cards and smear with petroleum jelly. Suspend the traps from stakes placed among the infested plants. The whiteflies will beattracted to the yellow color and will become entrapped on the sticky surface. Replace the traps when they're no longer sticky, or when they're full. You just have to be persistent in your method of control and eventually you'll be the victor!

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