Identifying And Killing Scale Insects On Houseplants
Soft scale are oval shaped insects that are brown in colour, and they appear on plants as small raised bumps.
Scale don't move much. They bite down on a leaf and suck out the sap. They excrete honeydew, which looks like a shiny droplet and is sticky to touch.
Scale usually get on houseplants when they are brought outside. While adults don't move, they produce babies in the spring that will travel.
First, you should quarantine the infected plant. New hatchlings could crawl and infect nearby plants.
Wash or scrape off any scale insects you can find. They take a bit of effort to remove due to their hard shell. A wet q-tip will work!
Especially look on the undersides of leaves, on stems and in any areas that are sheathed.
Then, spray the scale and whole plant with an oil based insecticide. The oil will break down the hard shell and kill the bugs.
You can also spray the plant with a chemical insecticide if you have a heavy infestation, but some plants are too delicate to handle the chemicals.
Repeat the process as necessary, until you haven't found any more scale. Juvenile scale in winter are most susceptible to oil insecticide.
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