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Jun 28, 2015 5:15 PM CST
Thread OP
Kansas City, MO (Zone 6a)
I have mites killing off my strawberry plants, and if possible, prefer to use a homemade/organic concoction to get rid of them...maybe baking soda? : /
Also, my indoor plants seem overrun by teeny flying bugs, like aphids or fruit flies...any sure way of getting rid of them?
Thanks!
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Jun 28, 2015 6:13 PM CST
Name: Sandy B.
Ford River Twp, Michigan UP (Zone 4b)
(Zone 4b-maybe 5a)
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@Havita, welcome to All Things Plants!!

I would try spraying with water first off... the indoor plants can be held under the shower or sink sprayer, the outdoor plants can be hit with the garden hose.

However, this isn't really my area of expertise -- I'm sure someone more knowledgeable will have more suggestions! Smiling
โ€œThink occasionally of the suffering of which you spare yourself the sight." ~ Albert Schweitzer
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Jun 28, 2015 7:32 PM CST
Southeast US (Zone 7b)
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As stated by WeedWhacker...the water hose will take care of them.

I also use neem oil and a little soap in a spray bottle, time consuming but it works for me. I like to apply directly to the aphids with this method to keep from harming any beneficial insects.
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Jun 28, 2015 7:33 PM CST
Name: Elaine
Sarasota, Fl
The one constant in life is change
Amaryllis Tropicals Multi-Region Gardener Orchids Master Gardener: Florida Irises
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Here's an article from the home page a couple of days ago about exactly this:

http://garden.org/ideas/view/B...

Hosing down an infested plant is always my first try. Sometimes you need to do it a few times in the first week or two, to get any new hatchings of eggs, that can stick to the leaves despite the rinsing.

My second try is a soapy water spray. Just a very mild solution of liquid dish soap - about 1/2tsp. to a quart spray bottle or 2tsp. per gallon if you have a pump sprayer. A mild dish soap like Method is good. Detergents with 'grease cutting' ability are a bit harsh. Be sure to spray tops and bottoms of the leaves, all the stems, everything! If you're spraying in the morning, rinse the plant off with plain water after a short while, like 10min. or so. Soap is a contact killer i.e. you actually need the soap to contact the bug to kill it. You don't want to spray a plant that is in direct sun with a soap solution either. Wait for a cloudy day or when the plant is in the shade.

Again, with the soapy water, you need to repeat the treatment about twice a week for a couple of weeks to be sure of getting the new generations of critters.

Baking soda is a good preventative measure for fungal infection but not effective as an insecticide.
Elaine

"Success is stumbling from failure to failure with no loss of enthusiasm." โ€“Winston Churchill
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Jun 28, 2015 7:55 PM CST
Name: Lyn
Weaverville, California (Zone 8a)
Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Garden Sages Garden Ideas: Level 1
I use just plain water on my roses.

I've been told that aphids don't have lungs, so they drown as soon as they are hit with water. However, I have never experienced a severe aphid infestation on my roses.

As for spider mites, here is a link to an article I wrote back in 2013:

http://garden.org/ideas/view/R...

Smiles,
Lyn
I'd rather weed than dust ... the weeds stay gone longer.
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Jun 28, 2015 8:13 PM CST
Name: Bob
Vernon N.J. (Zone 6b)
Aquarium Plants Bookworm Snakes Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Heucheras
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Neem oil works very well on aphids. If you have fruit flies make a trap with apple cider vinegar.
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Jun 29, 2015 7:40 AM CST
Name: Cindy
Hobart, IN zone 5
aka CindyMzone5
Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant Identifier
Perhaps your indoor plants are too wet? If you don't mind the appearance of yellow sticky traps, they work well with fungus gnats. I found some small sticky traps a couple of years ago and they caught hundreds of gnats.
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Jun 29, 2015 7:44 AM CST
Name: Celia
West Valley City, Utah (Zone 7a)
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Photography Irises Plant Identifier Hummingbirder Birds
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Fungus gnats was my first thought, too. Sticky tape works wonders.
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Jun 29, 2015 9:44 AM CST
Thread OP
Kansas City, MO (Zone 6a)
Thank you all!!! I'm going to try the soapy water method first (the plants are still small, I don't want to blast them to pieces with a garden hose ; )
And I'll get the sticky tape too, for the little bugs inside on my house plants. yes, I think I did water too much a week ago, and that's when they started coming : (
Thanks everyone!!!!
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Jun 29, 2015 10:32 AM CST
Name: Celia
West Valley City, Utah (Zone 7a)
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Photography Irises Plant Identifier Hummingbirder Birds
Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Cat Lover Butterflies Enjoys or suffers cold winters
Thumbs up
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Jun 30, 2015 6:41 PM CST
Name: Rick Corey
Everett WA 98204 (Zone 8a)
Sunset Zone 5. Koppen Csb. Eco 2f
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Photo Contest Winner: 2014 Avid Green Pages Reviewer Garden Ideas: Master Level Garden Sages I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! I helped plan and beta test the plant database.
Consider setting a hose-end-sprayer to "Mist" or perhaps "Flat". Mine has several settings that come out hard and fast, but with very small droplets so they don't rip leaves to shreds.

If you have irrigation gadgets (or any way to plug 1/4" poly tubing into a garden hose) , a 20-cent "mini-jet-sprayer" makes a nice fine, hard mist.

I might tape or tie 2-4 such jets together to make a "power-mister" that would either blow ALL the mites off the underside of a big bush in one pass, or loft that plant right into the stratosphere. One or the other.

P.S.

Mini-jet misters put out bigger droplets at lower speed when the water pressure is low (15-25 PSI).

At their "rated" pressure, 30 PSI, they have maximum range because the droplets aren't tiny, and the droplet speed is fairly high, and they do not slow down fast.

At 40 PSI, most jet sprayers turn into potent misters. The droplets are tiny after shooting through the orifice at 40 PSI! They don't travel far because those tiny droplets are slowed down fast by air friction.

That seems ideal to me for a spider-mite-blaster. A droplet that hits a mite is going to blow it away several feet or yards, if it doesn't drown. And you don;t need a tsunami of force that could knock blooms off a plant 5 feet away.
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Nov 19, 2022 12:57 PM CST
Name: Deborah
Michigan (Zone 6a)
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This is an older thread, yet useful to me as I have a red aphid infestation on my Mandevilla vine brought indoors for the winter.

I brought this plant indoors after soaking soil and treating with Neem. Regardless of preventative measures, still prone to red aphids indoors. I'm now using an organic insecticidal spray (Castile soap, a touch of vinegar, minced garlic) and will report back. Neem and DEarth did nothing to stop the infestation.
Fan of Winter Sowing, dahlias, heirloom tomatoes, community gardens, natives & Douglas Tallamy's Homegrown National Park
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Nov 19, 2022 1:18 PM CST
Name: Elaine
Sarasota, Fl
The one constant in life is change
Amaryllis Tropicals Multi-Region Gardener Orchids Master Gardener: Florida Irises
Herbs Region: Florida Vegetable Grower Daylilies Birds Cat Lover
Forget the garlic, and don't ! use vinegar on foliage, ever. If you use the Neem oil weekly you'll eventually get a systemic effect, but it's such a pain.

For an immediate treatment, put it in the bathtub, and spray it off with your shower head. Lukewarm water. Both spider mites and aphids hate water on them. You must do it probably 3 times, within a week or so to be sure of getting any new ones that hatch after the first go. One treatment of anything never cuts it. Clean around where the plant was, thoroughly with soap on a sponge or paper towel.

Indoor conditions are very favorable for spider mites especially - they love the weather warm and dry, so if you can repeat the showering process every couple of weeks that will help to keep them at bay. A spray bottle of water 'misted' around the plants regularly (or whenever you walk by) will also help. They love humidity, too.
Elaine

"Success is stumbling from failure to failure with no loss of enthusiasm." โ€“Winston Churchill
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Nov 19, 2022 5:10 PM CST
Name: Deborah
Michigan (Zone 6a)
Community gardens rock!
Cactus and Succulents Garden Photography Cottage Gardener Cut Flowers Dahlias Fruit Growers
Region: Michigan Native Plants and Wildflowers Winter Sowing
Oh geez, and some folks say to use a diluted rubbing alcohol on those aphids. Well, I've only sprayed once with the concoction, and my Mandevilla vine is rather large. CAN DO the shower treatment tho...just heavy, a bit unwieldy. I have treated with Neem for several weeks, not seeing a difference yet.

I mist the plants everyday (tropicals), but so far, MORE voracious aphids! Will research more, but hey *scotch tape* ! It's a Michigan Gardener suggestion without lugging the large plant to my shower. Super simple! Going for it: https://youtu.be/qs2IThaIOBc

May have to do it twice a day. Right now I just have one plant infected, but if there were many, I would need to do something else.




dyzzypyxxy said: Forget the garlic, and don't ! use vinegar on foliage, ever. If you use the Neem oil weekly you'll eventually get a systemic effect, but it's such a pain.

For an immediate treatment, put it in the bathtub, and spray it off with your shower head. Lukewarm water. Both spider mites and aphids hate water on them. You must do it probably 3 times, within a week or so to be sure of getting any new ones that hatch after the first go. One treatment of anything never cuts it. Clean around where the plant was, thoroughly with soap on a sponge or paper towel.

Indoor conditions are very favorable for spider mites especially - they love the weather warm and dry, so if you can repeat the showering process every couple of weeks that will help to keep them at bay. A spray bottle of water 'misted' around the plants regularly (or whenever you walk by) will also help. They love humidity, too.



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Fan of Winter Sowing, dahlias, heirloom tomatoes, community gardens, natives & Douglas Tallamy's Homegrown National Park
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Nov 19, 2022 6:04 PM CST
Name: Tiffany purpleinopp
Opp, AL @--`--,----- ๐ŸŒน (Zone 8b)
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You can mist rubbing alcohol to kill aphids, spider mites, mealies. Or use a cotton ball or Q-tip. I haven't had any adverse effects but it's prudent to try anything on a test leaf first.
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Avatar for Rubi
Nov 21, 2022 9:36 PM CST
West Central Minnesota (Zone 4a)
Hummingbirder
I do the bathtub washdown thing for aphids and spider mites. I'll leave the plant in the bathtub for 2 days, and do a soap/neem wash in the morning, and then wash it with water several times throughout the day. This will knock down the aphid population considerably, but won't kill them off completely. What works best for the aphids is when the asian beetles on the window get hungry. They take care of aphids fast. The spider mites are basically uncontrollable. The bathtub trick only slows them down.
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Nov 24, 2022 10:26 AM CST
Name: ZenMan
Kansas (Zone 5b)
Kansas 5b
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Hi everyone,

I noticed that Neem Oil was mentioned in several of the older posts, and since an organic way to kill mites? aphids? was asked for, the Neem Oil response was to be expected. I am not an organic gardener myself, so I don't use Neem Oil but if I did I would be concerned that Neem Oil is apparently prohibited in the UK. There is some relevent material in this link.

https://dede.afphila.com/is-ne...

I just had a serious aphid outbreak on some indoor zinnias I was growing, so prevention or control of aphids is of interest to me. I am currently using a Bayer systemic insecticide product, but if I were an organic gardener, that would be a no-no for me. Thumbs down

ZM
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Nov 25, 2022 5:50 AM CST
Name: Sally
central Maryland (Zone 7b)
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I started getting junk on my phone when I clicked that last link about neem
Plant it and they will come.
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