Orchids forum: Trying to control white bugs on my orchid leaves

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Jul 8, 2018 12:33 PM CST
From spring into summer I have been treating an orchid for the presence of a bright white "bug" on an orchid. The treatment consists of using IP alcohol on a Q tip to wipe the leaves where I see them. It seems to be somewhat effective. I also keep this plant away from the other patio orchids I have, a total of 13. But this morning I discovered the presence of these little critters on two additional orchids so I feel like I need to step up the treatment somehow.


Name: Elaine
Sarasota, Fl
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Jul 8, 2018 3:57 PM CST
Ed, they are mealie bugs, and you are treating them with the right stuff. But you can step it up by diluting your IP alcohol by about half with water and spraying it on the plants. This will get the stuff down into the leaf axils where the mealies like to hide out. These bugs have a waxy coating on them that will be dissolved by the alcohol, but you have to actually contact the bugs with the stuff before they are killed. So the Q-tip treatment gets some, but not all.

With any of these remedies, it's important to make several treatments a few days apart, because even if it looks like you got them all, there are inevitably eggs left behind that will hatch and launch a whole new generation. So, I would recommend you spray every plant thoroughly twice a week for the next two weeks - 4 treatments.

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Name: Bill
Livonia, Michigan (Zone 6a)
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Jul 9, 2018 3:10 PM CST
I thoroughly endorse dyzzypyxxy's recommendation for treatment and diagnosis.
If it were my plants I would let the alcohol sit a few minutes after you spray the whole plant and I would rinse plant with fresh water. But regardless you have some great information! Good luck!
"Our children are the messages we send to a time that we will never see."

Jul 12, 2018 3:43 PM CST
Thanks for the responses!

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