Ask a Question forum: red bugs on croton

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gdsalome
Aug 14, 2015 2:05 AM CST
Hi everyone. So today I realised, that my croton has little red bugs on its leaves, with little white spots on the undersidw. I don't know where those came from, none of my other plants have it. So I went around and googled it a bit, and found that it might be spider-mites, yet I can't see any webs on the leaves. For now I wiped its leaves clean with a soapy cloth to get rid of the little white (possibly eggs) spots. Has any of you ever had this? what should I do about it?
Name: Cindy
Hobart, IN zone 5
aka CindyMzone5
Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant Identifier
Shadegardener
Aug 16, 2015 7:53 AM CST
I see a lot of red spider mites in the summer when it's hotter. Although I don't grow croton, I think you did the right thing in wiping off the leaves. Do make sure that you "rinse" the leaves after about 30 minutes. Spider mites aren't supposed to like moisture so you could try misting your plant in the morning and see if that helps. I wouldn't automatically resort to using chemicals if you can resolve the problem with the misting.
Name: Elaine
South Sarasota, Florida (Zone 9b)
The one constant in life is change
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dyzzypyxxy
Aug 16, 2015 5:53 PM CST
So right, Cindy. I used a lot of things - soapy water, oil spray and systemics - to keep spider mites at bay on my brugmansias, and the best thing has been just hosing the plants off a couple of times a week until all the mites are gone. You do have to repeat the treatment a few times, to get all the new hatchlings, but the hosing breaks the life cycle of the mites and shuts them down.

Be sure to hose the under sides of the leaves and the stems as well as the tops of the leaves. Mites love to hide and make webs and lay eggs underneath the leaves and in the axils.
Elaine

"Success is stumbling from failure to failure with no loss of enthusiasm." –Winston Churchill

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