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How to Get Rid of Spider Mites on Indoor Plants

Written by Angelica, Social Media Manager

Spider mites are tiny eight-legged pests which are usually found in colonies on the underside of leaves, on both indoor and outdoor plants. Despite their tiny size, spider mites can cause a huge amount of damage to your plants. As the mites feed, they pierce the leaf tissue and suck up plant fluids which will leave noticeable specks that turn the leaves yellow and eventually cause them to wilt and shed. So, if you’re wondering why your fave plant is speckled with yellow, this could be the reason. Our blog provides a step-by-step guide on how to get rid of spider mites, and how to avoid them.

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A step by step guide on how to get rid of spider mites and what are they?

There are a number of ways to get rid of spider mites. Some of these have been listed below.

Step one - Check your other plants for spider mites.

If you have found that spider mites have infected your indoor plants, you must move it away from all other plants you have to prevent the spread. Then you will need to do a thorough check of all plants you have at home, particularly ones that you keep nearby. Be sure to check the leaves, stem and soil.

We suggest getting into a habit of checking for mites every time to water your plants, this will help you to find them early and prevent the spread if you do get an infestation of spider mites on indoor plants.

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Step two - Wipe down/wash the affected plants.

The next step is to wipe down your affected plants. You can do this by using a clean, damp cloth or even putting them in a sink or shower. This will dislodge the spider mites. Take care to not overwater your plants when doing this by ensuring there is enough drainage.

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Step three - Remove any damaged leaves.

Some leaves and stems may become particularly damaged as the spider mites feed, so we suggest cutting these away using pruning shears or normal scissors. Discard any infested parts in the bin, do not put them into compost.

Step 4 - Use neem oil.

You may want to follow up with an insecticide such as neem oil. This is a natural pesticide that is non-toxic to animals and many beneficial bugs, so is safe to use in your home.

You simply need to mix the neem oil with water and apply onto a clean cloth and wipe over your plant. Alternatively, you could use a spray bottle then wipe it over afterwards. You need to be sure to only use neem oil once every seven days, however it is fine to rinse and remove the spider mites in between if necessary.

Step 5 - Use insecticidal soap.

If you’re still struggling with how to get rid of spider mites, then you may want to turn to a stronger insecticidal soap. Where you can see the pests, you will need to apply the soap to the whole of the plant and only repeat every ten days. We suggest only applying the insecticidal soap when the plant is out of bright light, as the sunlight on the soapy leaves can cause the plant to burn.

You will need to be aware that incesaticial soap is not suitable for all plants. It’s usually best to test it on a small section of your plant and wait for 24 hours to check for negative effects such as wrinkling, spotting and browning. Don’t use it if it causes any of these effects.

Finally, here are the ways in which you can prevent spider mites on indoor plants.

  1. Always dust your leaves. Dust encourages spider mites so we suggest wiping down your plants with a clean damp cloth every week.

  2. Ensure your plants are properly watered. Watering stress from over or under watering makes plants more susceptible to spider mite infestations

Keep your plants as healthy as possible. Check out our plant care guides to ensure your plant is getting the right amount of light, water and feed to help keep your plant happy.

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