Whitefly Control with Natural Solutions
Often confused with aphids, whitefly feed on the underside of leaves. Both adult and nymph stages feed by sucking the plant juices. Large populations or heavy feeding by whitefly can give plants a mottled look, cause yellowing and eventually death to the host plant. They can reduce plant vigor and vector a number of plant disorders and viruses; they reproduce quickly and spread at a rapid rate. Whiteflies have an extremely wide host range, including poinsettia, peppers, tomato, mustard, cabbage, cucumber, bush beans, and soybeans. Females can lay up to 200 eggs, generally on the bottomside of leaves.
To determine whether you have aphids or whitefly - shake the plant. Whitefly will fly off the plant, whereas the aphids will remain motionless.
Prevention and Control:
- Many whitefly infestations originate from plants brought into your growing area from nurseries. For this reason careful inspection of new plants before transplant is crucial.
- Knockdown with sprays of horticultural oils, insecticidal soap.
- See the beneficial insects listed below that will control whitefly infestations.
- Botanigard is an excellent bio-rational control for whitefly – use on the plant or as a soil drench.
- Between growing seasons, make sure to clean everything in the greenhouse with OxiDate or Sanidate.