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Spider Mites

This is a discussion on Spider Mites within the Orchid Ailments / The Compost Pile forums, part of the Orchid Culture category; Hi, I have spider mites in one of my phals, and I would like to ...

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  1. #1
    annacello's Avatar
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    Default Spider Mites

    Hi,

    I have spider mites in one of my phals, and I would like to get rid of them without using chemical insecticides. I do organic gardening and I don't like the idea of using dangerous chemicals inside or outside of the house.

    The plant doesn't have any damage yet, but I saw some bugs crawling in the potting medium and used my orchid books to ID the bugs. They are tiny, sort of translucent and shaped like ticks or spiders with short legs. I would post a picture, but the bugs are too small for my camera to focus on.

    Any suggestions?

    Anna

  2. #2
    Ron-NY is offline rothaholic
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    what you can do is: first take the veggie sprayer to the plant and hose it down both above and under leaves. this will cut back on the current population. Then stop at your local garden center or big box store....buy some ultrafine horticultural oil, or some Neem oil. Mix it, according to directions, in a hand spray bottle. add a drop of liquid dish detergent as a emulsifier. Shake well and spray your plant to make sure you are covering all the leaf surfaces. Place the plant in the shade until it is thoroughly dry. Do this 7-10 days apart for 3 or 4 treatments and that should solve your problem. Be sure to shake it well before using for subsequent treatments!

    Spider mites don't seem to be a problem where the humidity is good. You may wish to look at keeping the humidity higher around your orchids. Also, if you saw these bugs in the medium, you may wish to repot the plant as well. Spider mites are very tiny and many times can not be detected on the leaf until the webbing gives them away or damage is seen.

    Good luck...Ron

  3. #3
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    Excellent answer, Ron! Good luck, Anna.

    Cheers,
    BD

  4. #4
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    wetfeet101b is offline It's not dead! It's just permanently dormant.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ron-NY View Post
    Spider mites don't seem to be a problem where the humidity is good. You may wish to look at keeping the humidity higher around your orchids. Also, if you saw these bugs in the medium, you may wish to repot the plant as well. Spider mites are very tiny and many times can not be detected on the leaf until the webbing gives them away or damage is seen.

    Good luck...Ron
    I agree with Ron. Spider mite infestations are known to occur in dry conditions but they appear to shun higher humidity. 50% and up seems to inhibit their life cycle.

  5. #5
    m-h
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    Hate to tell you guys this, but I live where humidity is 70%+ and we have spider mites....

  6. #6
    Ron-NY is offline rothaholic
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    this has been my experience with orchids in this area. I know that there are many different kinds of spider mites...I guess Tahiti has humidity loving spider mites, LOL. Tell you what...let's change places next January...I will make the sacrifice and deal with the spider mites for you

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    Thanks everyone! I didn't want to repot it because it is in bloom, but I guess I'll have to. And I'll go get that Neem oil and hose it down.

  8. #8
    Lizgeo is offline Senior Member
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    This sounds stupid, but, what is veggie sprayer?

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lizgeo View Post
    This sounds stupid, but, what is veggie sprayer?
    Usually a hand held, air pump type sprayer. They are generally used to spray plants in a small garden. Some people use them to spray small fruit trees and hedges as well.



    Cheers,
    BD

  10. #10
    Lizgeo is offline Senior Member
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    OK. But what kind of liquid goes in the sprayer?

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