If you notice a web on the underside of your plants’ leaf, it wasn’t made by a spider. That’s right, there are spider mites actually guilty of that ugly sight. The easiest way to identify them is to place a sheet of paper under your plant and shake it. You will a lot of tiny black dots which are basically the spider mites.
You will also notice that the leaves on your plants have developed yellow spots. In some cases, your leaves might be curling or dropping off which means your plant is dying. Thus, spider mites are literally feeding off of your plant, sucking the life out of it. Keep reading and see different natural approaches you can use to get rid of spider mites.
1. Use a hose to spray the plants
The best way to get rid of spider mites is using a hose to spray your plants. This is easy because you are able to especially hose down the undersides of the leaves. This will knock down the spider mites off the leaves.
You can also do something similar for your houseplants. Turn them upside down in a sink. Then, with sprayer attachment, wash the leaves thoroughly. Alternatively, you can use a sponge to clean each individual leaf.
2. Take advantage of neem oil
Another great and natural method is to spray your plants with neem oil. It will act as a repellent preventing the mites from infesting your plants. Furthermore, neem oil is great because it can interfere with pests’ ability to feed.
Neem oil can also interfere with their hormones making it difficult for them to lay eggs. For this to work, you will need to spray for a couple of weeks, concentrating on the undersides of the leaves. That way, you will completely rid your plants of spider mites.
3. DIY your own insecticidal soap
Insecticidal soaps are an ecological method to get rid of spider mites. Just as soap can dry out your skin, insecticidal soap dries out the insects’ bodies, killing them.
To make your own insecticidal soap, it is important that you use the correct kind of soap. Do not use dry clothes washing detergents or dry dishwasher detergents. They are too harsh for your plants. Also, avoid the use of dish detergents with degreasing ingredients. You need to use pure soaps like Castile soap or natural soaps that contain fatty acids. Use 1 tablespoon of soap in 1 quart of water. For larger quantities, use 5 tablespoons of soap in 1 gallon of water. Apply using a spray bottle.
4. Check out the heat
Thus, spider mites really thrive in hot, dry conditions. To prevent this to happen, make sure you keep your plants well-watered. The humidity from the moist soil will discourage the mites from moving in. If you allow your plants to become dry, especially in hot summer conditions, spider mites will make themselves at home.
5. Keep them clean
Finally, the last method to keep an infestation from happening is to throw the spider mites away immediately. Thus, when you see the leaves are suffering from these pests, remove and discard them. That way, the pests will not be able to spread and move on to the next plant.