How To Get Rid Of Spider Mites On Palm Tree?

How To Get Rid Of Spider Mites On Palm Tree

If you’re wondering how to get rid of spider mites on palm tree, you’re not alone. Spider mites often cause problems with houseplants, particularly palm trees. They leave a delicate webbing over the foliage and the leaves will start losing their vibrance and turn greyish as the pests suck out the plant’s cellular matter.

Getting rid of spider mites on palm trees involves spraying them with homemade soap solution, horticultural oil, or insecticidal soaps. Removing and disposing off heavily infested leaves and rubbing the leaves with alcohol solution are also effective controls against these pests.

While a few mites won’t do much harm to your palm tree, they reproduce and multiply faster than you’d expect and a heavy infestation can pose significant damage to the plant. Prompt action needs to be taken before spider mites get hold of your palm tree.

How To Get Rid Of Spider Mites On Palm Tree

How To Get Rid Of Spider Mites On Palm Tree

Spider mites are small and often go unnoticed until the damage starts to show on the plants.

That’s what makes them one of the most destructive houseplant pests, with palm trees being among the most common victims.

If you see webbing around the foliage, discoloration of leaves and feel fine sand on the leaf surface when you touch them, you’re up against spider mites.

Prune and discard the leaves that are heavily infested.

Rub the remaining leaves with 70% rubbing alcohol to kill the remaining mites.

Alternatively, you can dilute rubbing alcohol with equal quantity of water and spray it on the fronds using a spraying bottle.

Repeat the application every few days until the mites are gone for good.

How To Get Rid Of Spider Mites On Indoor Palms

How To Get Rid Of Spider Mites On Indoor Palm

Spider mites are more attracted to certain plant species than others.

They have an affinity for certain metabolites and aromas given off by these plants, indoor palms being one of them.

Move the palm tree outdoors or under the shower in your bathroom.

Spray the entire palm, with the stems, trunk, and both sides of the leaves with a strong stream of water from the hose or showerhead.

The forceful jet of water is enough to dislodge and kill the pests.

Repeat the treatment once a week until the spider mites are all gone.

Even after the mites are in control, give your palm a shower once a month to prevent any future infestations.

How To Get Rid Of Spider Mites On Majesty Palm

How To Get Rid Of Spider Mites On Majesty Palm

If you’ve noticed tiny yellow or brown spots on the leaves accompanied with delicate webbing, your beautiful majesty palm is infested by spider mites!

Don’t panic; though destructive, these pests are easy to cater with some simple home remedies.

Neem oil, a horticultural oil, is an excellent treatment against spider mites.

Mix 2 tablespoons of neem oil in a gallon of water to spray it on your majesty palm using a sprayer bottle.

It works by interfering with the bug’s hormones, shortening their life cycle.

Repeat applications as needed until all the spider mites are gone from the plant. 

Since it’s safe and natural, you can use it without worrying even if there are pets or children in the house.

How To Treat Spider Mites On Palms

How To Treat Spider Mites On Palms

Spider mites can cause serious damage to palms if the infestation isn’t addressed in time.

They’re most active in dry summers, which is when they find their way into the house through open doors and windows and find a comfortable home on your palm tree.

Heavy infestations will need to be controlled by insecticidal soaps or horticultural oils that are labeled for killing mites.

Before spraying the entire plant, test the product on a small portion of it and wait 2 to 3 days for any negative signs on the leaves.

Once you’re sure the product is safe for the palm, spray the entire plant with it, taking care that the undersides of the leaves are thoroughly covered with the product.

These soaps and oils can damage carpets, rugs, curtains and other fabric material so be careful that all such material around the plants is covered with plastic before spraying.

How To Treat Mealybugs On Palms

How To Treat Mealybugs On Palms

Spider mites aren’t the only problem your palm trees can encounter.

They’re also susceptible to many other pests, including mealybugs.

Mealybugs are known to infest kentia palm, lady palm, parlor palm, pygmy palm, Rhapis palm and many other varieties of palm trees.

If you find white, cottony masses on the leaves and stems of palm trees, you’re up against mealy bugs.

Separate the palm tree to keep the infestation from spreading and spray the plants with an insecticide labeled for mealybugs.

Alternatively you can also wipe with leaves and stems with cotton swabs dipped in rubbing alcohol.

If the infestation isn’t catered promptly, mold can appear on the foliage.

Eventually, the leaves will become deformed and in severe conditions, the infestation may even kill the fronds and, ultimately, the entire palm.

Does Dish Soap Kill Spider Mites

Does Dish Soap Kill Spider Mites

Soaps are effective in treating a wide range of pests problems.

Small, soft-bodied insects are the ones that are most susceptible to soaps and detergents, including mealybugs, aphids, and spider mites.

Dish soap kills spider mites by disrupting the cell membranes of the insects.

They also dissolve the protective wax on their bodies, killing them eventually through excessive water loss.

However, since dish washing soaps and hand soaps aren’t labeled for use on plants and can be potentially harmful to them, they must be used with care.

Create a 2% solution of soap and water and spray on a small portion to observe any side effects before spraying the entire plant with the mixture.

Does Peroxide Kill Spider Mites

Does Peroxide Kill Spider Mites

Although it’s not sold as a miticide, hydrogen peroxide is effective against a range of pests, including spider mites.

It’s an environmentally safe product and when used in 5% or less concentration, it poses no danger to animals or humans.

Hydrogen peroxide kills spider mites, in addition to many other common garden pests, including thrips and slugs.

Measure ⅝ cup of 35% food-grade hydrogen peroxide and 4 teaspoon rubbing alcohol in a 1 liter sprayer bottle.

Fill the bottle with water, mix the contents and spray it on the plants to get rid of spider mites.

Cover the plants thoroughly with the spray and repeat the application multiple times until the spider mites are gone for good.

How To Keep Spider Mites Off Indoor Plants

How To Keep Spider Mites Off Indoor Plants

Spider mites often bother your indoor plants, especially in warm and dry conditions.

It is therefore important to maintain a semi-humid or humid environment around the plants, especially if you’ve encountered spider mites in the past.

Use a humidifier near the plants to maintain a consistently humid environment or mist the plants every now and then to increase the moisture in the surrounding air.

Keep any new plants from the nursery separated from other indoor plants for a few days until you are completely sure they are pest free.

Wipe the leaves clean regularly to make the environment less attractive to spider mites since they are particularly fond of dusty conditions.

Also keep the plants well watered since water-stressed plants are more susceptible to pest problems, especially spider mite infestations.

Check out the full guide on how to kill spider mites on indoor plants.

How To Get Rid Of Spider Mites Naturally

How To Get Rid Of Spider Mites Naturally

It’s not necessary to use harsh chemicals to get rid of spider mites on plants.

In fact, there are plenty of tricks to get rid of mites naturally.

You can fight spider mites with predatory mites available at garden centers.

At least 3 species of these predatory mites are known to work against spider mites, killing them off without posing any damage to your plants.

Just purchase these at the nearest nursery and introduce them on the plants where spider mites are causing trouble.

You’ll notice a significant reduction in the pest population over the next few days.

See the full guide on how to get rid of spider mites naturally.

How To Get Rid Of Spider Mites In Your Garden

How To Get Rid Of Spider Mites In Your Garden

Spider mites aren’t only a problem indoors.

They can also attack your outdoor garden, eating away your trees, shrubs, flowers, fruits and vegetables.

To get rid of them, hose down the infested plants with a strong jet of water from the hose.

This will dislodge and kill the pests.

Diatomaceous earth is also an effective treatment against spider mites, killing them by dehydrating their bodies.

Sprinkle food-grade diatomaceous earth on the infested plants and the surrounding soil to get rid of the mites.

Additionally, diatomaceous earth also proves a valuable soil amendment, improving the moisture retention of sandy soil.

Conclusion

Despite being annoying and destructive to your plants if not controlled in time, spider mites are easy to get rid of.

You may have to repeat treatments multiple times until the plants are completely rid of spider mites.

Prevent any further infestations by keeping your plants healthy and vigorous. 

About the author

Greg Volente

Greg Volente holds a Naturalist Certificate from the Morton Arboretum, worked for The Nature Conservancy leading environmental education programs and doing natural areas restoration, and worked in the soil science research & testing lab at Michigan State University. Besides gardening, he's an avid wildflower enthusiast, and loves botanizing, hiking, and backpacking.