white bugs and ants - Knowledgebase Question

delray beach, Fl
Question by rotti8844
November 8, 2009
How can I safely rid by indoor plants from ants and white fluffy bugs without harming my dogs?...they eat soil sometimes

Answer from NGA
November 8, 2009


If the insects are white, cottony-looking creatures that congregate in the area where the leaf meets the stem, they are probably mealybugs. You can control them by dabbing each one with a Q-Tip dipped in rubbing alcohol. A few days after treatment you should be able to pry them off with your fingernail or a pair of tweezers. Ants are visiting because mealybugs exude a sweet, sticky substance as they feed. The ants are collecting this substance to feed the herd. Once you get rid of the mealybugs, the ants will go elsewhere. You might place an ant bait trap in or near your houseplants. These contain boric acid which the ants will take back to their nest and share with other ants, which should eliminate the colony. Best wishes with your houseplants.

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