Monday, March 31, 2008

Insect Problems with Gardenias

I have a gardenia at my front window and have noticed sooty mold on the leaves. I inspected the leaves and found some flat looking greyish bugs that look kinda like scale and have globs of cotton on my leaves. I poked at one of the cotton balls and a dark round looking bug with an orange head was under the cotton. It kinda looked like he was feeding on the other flat looking bug but I couoldn't be for sure. The flat gray ones have spikes all around theyre body kinda like a swordfish's snout looks. I have tried an insecticide but I dont want to hurt my plant by spraying it again. What can I do?


Anne's response:


Gardenias often have problems with insects such as scale and mealy bugs. One solution is to spray the plant in late March with a horticultural oil spray that smothers overwintering insects and their eggs. It is safe to use the sprays until temperatures get over 75 degrees. You spray the top and bottom of the leaves and the bark on the limbs and trunk. Horticultural oil is a product that is labeled as an organic insecticide and is usually permitted on products labeled as organically grown.

No comments: