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Small bugs.. mini-ants?

This is a discussion on Small bugs.. mini-ants? within the Orchid Ailments / The Compost Pile forums, part of the Orchid Culture category; I've recently noticed some extra tiny brown bugs in the media of a few of ...

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  1. #1
    Shaydra is offline Senior Member
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    Default Small bugs.. mini-ants?

    I've recently noticed some extra tiny brown bugs in the media of a few of my newer plants... these may have come in with my Sharry Baby after spending a week outside (and enjoying it, however it did get too hot, so..), or they may have come home with me on my farmers market plants - I've seen the bugs on the media of both.

    They're too small for me to get a clear pic with my digital camera... I'd use my SO's $2500 camera, but the battery is dead! That, and I have this habit of killing them on sight. Crawly bugs are icky. They're about the same color as the bark media and remind me of very tiny ants.. like 1/4 - 1/3 the average small-ant sized. So far, I don't see any leaf damage and they're mostly on the media...

    Any ideas what the heck these are and how I might get rid of them? I was thinking of getting some neem oil... but I don't dare flush it through the media...

  2. #2
    clintdawley's Avatar
    clintdawley is offline Wrapped in metal..wrapped in ivy...
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    I have no idea what those are..you CAN use Neem oil as a media wash..I do it all the time with no problems. Just mix about a tablespoon in a gallon of water and add a drop of dish shop (non-anti-bacterial). That's how I de creepy-crawly my outside plants when I have to bring them in in November.
    It does no harm to the plant at all...just make sure you leech the pot next time you water...



    Quote Originally Posted by Shaydra View Post
    I've recently noticed some extra tiny brown bugs in the media of a few of my newer plants... these may have come in with my Sharry Baby after spending a week outside (and enjoying it, however it did get too hot, so..), or they may have come home with me on my farmers market plants - I've seen the bugs on the media of both.

    They're too small for me to get a clear pic with my digital camera... I'd use my SO's $2500 camera, but the battery is dead! That, and I have this habit of killing them on sight. Crawly bugs are icky. They're about the same color as the bark media and remind me of very tiny ants.. like 1/4 - 1/3 the average small-ant sized. So far, I don't see any leaf damage and they're mostly on the media...

    Any ideas what the heck these are and how I might get rid of them? I was thinking of getting some neem oil... but I don't dare flush it through the media...

  3. #3
    Shaydra is offline Senior Member
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    Oh good! I was afraid the neem oil would burn the roots. And with the Sharry Baby in spike and both my Phal Mini-Mark & Paph Dellaina in bloom... *shudder* I'll go pick up the Neem oil after work.... and non-antibacterial dish soap (think everything in the house has germ-killer in it).

    I really hate bugs... I want to keep these little whatsits from spreading!

    Now that I think about it, I bet they came in on my Sharry Baby, because of the honey dew on the spikes while it was outside. They probably are some kind of sugar loving bug (like ants).

    HA! These bugs now give me a valid excuse to go shopping at the box store. I'll probably come home with Neem oil, dish soap and .... either orchid pots or orchids or both.

  4. #4
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    No root burn at all. I've even used it one the fine-rooted oncidiums with no problems. I wouldn't use it on Masdies or Pleuros, but I don' t grow those (nor am I quite sure why I would be afraid to try Neem on them).

  5. #5
    Shaydra is offline Senior Member
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    I don't have any of those, either. Most of mine are good beginner-types (sort of): Bllra, Catt, Colm, Onc, Paph, Phal, & a Phrag.

    And I want MORE!! .. always. Everytime a bloom fades, I get all antsy to buy another plant.

  6. #6
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    I would just mix up some malathyon and flush through the pots. It will kill any and all buggies and pests. The neem oil must actually get on the bugs to smother (remove the O2) them to death. If they get under a piece of medium and the neem oil doesn't get on them, then they will just crawl out and move into another pot. I say poison them! (But that could be because I have been fighting some serious scale on a few of my cattleyas and am angry about it right now.)

    Cheers,
    BD

  7. #7
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    Kerry is offline Too much to learn, let alone re-member!
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    Wow Bruce you really are feeling brutal today!

    Can't say I blame you, no one wants to have bugs, I hope you get rid of them Sara.

  8. #8
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    Nuke em BD. Take no prisioners . nasty $@*&^ things ! Gin

  9. #9
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    heheheheee You don't need to worry. I have been!

    Cheers,
    BD

  10. #10
    Shaydra is offline Senior Member
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    Now I don't know what to do. Your suggested store for the Malathion didn't have any readily available, however I saw some in the box store I was in tonite. Still have not used anything (though I did get the neem oil) and oddly have not seen any bugs anyway. (I think this is similar to the theory of putting the hedge clippers near your orchids to make them bloom. )

    Also, my mother was telling me that Malathion is incredibly poisonous, smelly and a carcinogen?

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