White scales - house plants - Knowledgebase Question

Lake Zurich, Il
Question by amayaalfredo
February 13, 2010
How to get rid of them .insecticidal soap does not work.


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Answer from NGA
February 13, 2010

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Scales are unaffected by insecticidal soap because the insects have a hard outer coating that the soap won't penetrate. A better control method, although somewhat laborious, is dabbing each and every one of those scales with a Q-Tip dipped in rubbing alcohol. The alcohol dissolves the protective outer covering and the insects die. A few days after treatment they should be all dried out and you can scrape them off the plants with your fingernail or a toothpick. Be sure to monitor your plants closely for a second generation of the pests and treat as necessary. Good luck with your houseplants.

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