Coleus forum: pests please help!

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Name: Matt
Texas (Zone 9a)
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matt56ah
Jul 24, 2016 11:34 AM CST
All of my Coleus plants are getting overrun with little white puffballs which I think are Mealybugs. It's came down to the end for one of my favorite Coleus "Marooned" and I would hate to lose more of my babies but they are spreading very fast. If there are any suggestions y'all have I would appreciate the input!
Thanks!
Name: Allison
NJ (Zone 6a)
Forum moderator Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Hummingbirder Region: New Jersey Dog Lover
Seed Starter Container Gardener Garden Ideas: Level 1
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Onewish1
Jul 26, 2016 3:42 AM CST

Moderator

Can use rubbing alcohol on the ones you see.. systemic granular is the long term .. I just hate using it because of the hummingbirds and bees
Name: Tiffany
Opp, AL (Zone 8b)
Houseplants Organic Gardener Composter Region: Gulf Coast Miniature Gardening Native Plants and Wildflowers
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purpleinopp
Jul 29, 2016 12:35 PM CST
Do your plants look healthy otherwise?

If you have other spaces, I would take several cuttings of each rinse well, and plant them in other locations.

If you can find or buy any predators of mealys, that's an option:
https://www.google.com/#q=predators+of+mealybug

To make use of rubbing alcohol, you can mix it with water and spritz onto plants with a spray/squirt bottle. Should eliminate those that get hit. Try on a test leaf and wait a day or 2 to make sure your plant(s) doesn't mind.
http://homeguides.sfgate.com/can-spray-plants-alcohol-97909....
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Name: Regina
Warrenville, SC (Zone 8a)
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scflowers
Aug 4, 2016 11:58 PM CST
Allison,
Can you give me more info on the systemic granular that you are referring to? Chemical/namebrand/where to purchase...mealy bugs are feasting on my coleus!
Thanks.
Name: Tiffany
Opp, AL (Zone 8b)
Houseplants Organic Gardener Composter Region: Gulf Coast Miniature Gardening Native Plants and Wildflowers
Bulbs Foliage Fan Tropicals Butterflies Garden Sages Cactus and Succulents
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purpleinopp
Aug 5, 2016 10:46 AM CST
Regina, are you able to add a pic of your damaged Coleus? If chunks of leaf are disappearing, I strongly suspect it's some type of caterpillar if you're not seeing slime trails from slugs. Then can blend in very well and tend to hang out on the bottoms of leaves to hide. Their poo can often give-away their location. If you can find it, you can remove it.

I see that you have the frog badge on your profile. Please know that systemic pesticides are among the most dangerous, environmentally persistent ones that are generally the most dangerous to such sensitive wildlife as frogs & toads. Anywhere that sells garden chemicals should have an assortment of 'cide products. Read the labels to choose one said to be effective against the particular pest you have.

It might be easier/safer/cheaper to take some cuttings of your Coleus, rinse them well, and start over in a clean pot of fresh soil or other spot in the ground.
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☕👓 The only way to succeed is to try.
Name: Regina
Warrenville, SC (Zone 8a)
Daylilies Ponds Frogs and Toads Dog Lover Cat Lover Butterflies
Dahlias Region: South Carolina
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scflowers
Aug 5, 2016 2:00 PM CST
It is definitely mealy bugs. I have tried so many ways to kill them, but they keep reappearing. I want to treat some cuttings that I will be rooting in the greenhouse this fall/winter, so no danger of killing frogs or other organisms. I sprayed plants in the greenhouse this winter, but could never get them all the way gone. I am looking for a systemic granular to stay in thieir pots for the duration of winter as they are rooting and will become my plants for next year...

I only use pesticides as my last resort, and unfortunately I have reached that point with the mealy bugs. It is so hard to get to all the nooks and crannies to wash them all off on 2.5 foot mature plants Sighing! They seem to especially like the Red Head and Black Star varieties...
Name: Allison
NJ (Zone 6a)
Forum moderator Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Hummingbirder Region: New Jersey Dog Lover
Seed Starter Container Gardener Garden Ideas: Level 1
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Onewish1
Aug 6, 2016 4:17 AM CST

Moderator

This is the one I use inside the house .. for over wintering it is a must

Bonide Product 951 Systemic House Plant Insect Control 8 Oz. https://www.amazon.com/dp/B000BX1HKI/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_apa_2GBP...

Before I bring them in they get a dose of this one.. the jar will last for years and years .. only need a tiny bit to mix up

Merit 75WP Insecticide 2 oz https://www.amazon.com/dp/B004FDUHQA/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_apa_qJBP...

I don't recommend either of these for use outdoors .. too many good critters can be harmed with them
Name: Allison
NJ (Zone 6a)
Forum moderator Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Hummingbirder Region: New Jersey Dog Lover
Seed Starter Container Gardener Garden Ideas: Level 1
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Onewish1
Aug 6, 2016 4:20 AM CST

Moderator

Most of the time it seems they are in the soil.. and then return after alcohol treatments .. can always try changing most of the soil
Name: Matt
Texas (Zone 9a)
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matt56ah
Aug 22, 2016 2:14 PM CST
Thanks for all the help fellow gardeners!
Name: Allison
NJ (Zone 6a)
Forum moderator Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Hummingbirder Region: New Jersey Dog Lover
Seed Starter Container Gardener Garden Ideas: Level 1
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Onewish1
Aug 27, 2016 5:47 AM CST

Moderator

Good luck.. it can be a pain

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