Control Mites Using No Insecticides

Manage The Plant Environment
Make your yard unfriendly to mites by providing sufficient water and air:

Water Properly. Mites prefer dry conditions so they are less likely to be a problem during rainy periods. Also, properly watered plants are more resistant to mites than those stressed by drought, so try to avoid letting your plants dry out too much. A fairly strong spray of water on infested plants will help control mites, and will deter their spreading over a plant.

Keep Air Moving. Provide good air circulation around vulnerable plants. Mites thrive where air circulation is poor. They crawl from plant to plant where the leaves intermingle. Outdoors, space vulnerable plants and seedlings so that their leaves will not touch when they are mature size. Spread indoor plants apart somewhat so that they don't touch each other to slow the progress of an infestation. If possible, move infested plants to an area for treatment separate from healthy plants.

Control With Water Spray
Wash mites off infested plants with a moderately forceful water spray strong enough to wash the surface of the leaf without damaging it. This trick works particularly well with small and medium sized houseplants. Hold them over the sink or bathtub with some sort of cover to keep the dirt from falling out, and direct the spray against the undersides of most of the leaves. The mites and their webs are washed down the drain. Check for another outbreak within a few weeks, in case some eggs remain.

Use a similar technique on mites on outdoor landscape and garden plants. It disrupts their life cycle and they have difficulty getting back up onto the plant. Use an insect killing hose wand attachment that is specifically designed to wash off pests such as Mites and mites. Its forceful spray is easily directed upward to hit the undersides of leaves and hard-to-reach stems.

Try Misting and Shading
Mites prefer a warm, dry environment. In situations where infestations are limited to a small area of the yard or a small group of houseplants discourage mites by misting the affected plants daily with water and shading them with wire mesh screening, white, polyspun garden fleece or shade cloth. These measures foster a cooler, moister microclimate around vulnerable plants and helps control mite populations.

Try Glue Trap for Fruit Trees
Try a glue trap designed to imprison mites on fruit trees and other smaller woody plants. Dissolve 1/4 pound of white glue in a gallon of warm water and let it stand overnight. Spray this mixture on twigs and leaves of fruit trees. When the mixture dries, it will flake off, taking the trapped pests with it. In midseason several applications, 7 to 10 days apart, are needed to halt consecutive generations of mites.

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