All About Pest Control Daily

What Is Eating My Houseplants? Houseplant Pest Identification and Control

Aug 7

There's been a considerable increase in the number of homes in Athens, GA, that now regularly feature indoor plants for décor, maybe fueled by a growing need for green spaces, but what happens if your plants suffer despite your best attempts to water and provide the correct exposure to sunlight? In short, something may be consuming your plants. Therefore, it's critical to understand the types of common household pests that infest houseplants and what you can do to diagnose and prevent infestation in your plants, as well as how to avoid infesting your existing plants when you bring new indoor plants home.


The following are some of the most frequent houseplant pests:


Insects with scales

Because they do not resemble insects, standard brown scales might be challenging to identify. Typically oval-shaped brown, about 3-4 mm long and half as wide. Scales are so-called because of their scale-like appearance and waxy or armored coats. Scales, which are commonly found in bunches along stems, suck the juices from plants using their spiky mouthparts. Scale removal is straightforward because these pests only move when they are young.


  1. Prevent scales from falling into your soil by wrapping your plant's soil in a plastic bag or another covering.
  2. Apply a natural rosemary insecticidal soap to the plant.
  3. Brush the plant's scales away with a toothbrush or your fingers.
  4. Finally, spray the plant in a sink or shower with a vigorous hose.
  5. Every few days, inspect your plant for scale.


Spider mites

Spider mites can go undetected for a long time because they resemble spider webs. Spider mites can resemble dust on a spider web, but they are microscopic mites that construct tiny webs and lay eggs all over your plant and in the soil. They then sap the life from your plant. Spraying your plant with an organic fungicide, such as Flying Skull Nuke 'Em Insecticide and Fungicide, is an effective strategy to get rid of these pests. However, if this solution does not kill every spider mite in 24 hours, you may need to spray again in the coming weeks to ensure that spider mites are no longer present in your home.



Whiteflies, a widespread pest of Athens, GA ornamentals, can go unnoticed while sucking nutrition from the underside of leaves. Whiteflies, on the other hand, are simple to notice if you inspect your plant for them since they fly into the air when disturbed. Whiteflies can cause plant damage and even death, so keep an eye out for them. Whiteflies can be removed from your plants by spraying them with quick bursts of water from your garden hose. In addition, you can use yellow sticky traps to attract whiteflies, or you can release green lacewings, ladybird beetles, or whitefly parasites to rid your houseplants of whiteflies.


Fungus gnats

Fungus gnats are bothersome in the same way that fruit flies may be. However, they are more of a nuisance for plant owners than for the plants themselves. Fungus gnats breed in the soil due to over-watering, and you may eliminate these pests by letting the soil in your plants dry up before sprinkling the soil with rice hulls.



Thrips are elongated insects that can wreak havoc on plants, quickly infesting other plants, puncturing the outer layer of plants, and creating a silver discoloration on leaves. The release of natural predators, thrips predators, and minute pirate bugs in tandem works to eliminate these harmful pests, as does the placement of blue sticky traps around your plant, as thrips are drawn to the color blue.


At Pete's Pest Patrol, we are experts in Athens, GA, pest control. If you have any questions about the best way to get rid of houseplant pests, don't hesitate to get in touch with us. Our team will be happy to help you find a solution that works for your situation.