Whitefly Problem? Let Greenleaf Help!

As a homeowner, you take pride in your garden. But when a mass of whiteflies take up residence in the backyard, your favorite rosebushes and prize-winning plants become the perfect food source for these bugs.

What Are Whiteflies?

Whiteflies are small insects that resemble white moths. They feast on a variety of flowers, trees, and even vegetables. An infestation usually begins when one female whitefly lays around 200 eggs on the underside of a leaf. After a few weeks, the eggs hatch and the larvae latch onto the host plant. The larvae remain immobile for several weeks as they feed on the plant, then mature into adults.

The entire process, from egg to mature adult, takes around 30 days. As the larvae grow into flying, white, moth-like insects, they spread to more and more plants in your yard.

How Can You Recognize a Whitefly Infestation?

If your garden has whiteflies, you'll probably notice the following symptoms:

  • Disfigured, yellow leaves
  • Sticky sap on leaves (called "honeydew"), which attracts mold and makes leaves look dirty
  • Fallen leaves or dead plants out of season

If you suspect you have a whitefly infestation, check the undersides of your leaves. You might see a circular pattern of white dots, or the eggs laid by an adult female.

How Can You Get Rid of Whiteflies?

A whitefly infestation is hard to combat, primarily because one adult female lays such a large amount of eggs. However, it isn’t impossible to avoid whiteflies. Take the following precautions to avoid these bugs in the first place:

  • Thin out your plants, and don't let your garden get too overgrown.
  • Schedule pre-treatment each year. We use a soil drench product to reduce whitefly populations.

Some homeowners also introduce certain types of spiders or ladybugs into their yard. These bugs eat whiteflies and keep their numbers low.

If you need help with whitefly pest control, call Greenleaf Organic Pest Management at 1-877-524-7336.