Plants from the Ficus genus, the Mulberry family, have been used by humans since time immemorial. Ficus leaves are used in medicine.
Ficuses grow mainly in the warm climate of the tropics and subtropics. Because of their attractive appearance, they have become popular houseplants. One of them is the ficus benjamin, the pests of which and measures to combat them will be discussed below.
- Mealybugs on ficus, control measures
- How to deal with a scabbard on a ficus benjamin
- Spider mite control measures on ficus benjamin
Mealybugs on ficus, control measures
Very often, ficus benjamin begin to turn yellow, dry and fall off the leaves. If this is not due to errors in the care or movement of the flower to another place, then perhaps the reason for this phenomenon is the defeat of the plant by mealybugs. To detect a pest, you need to examine the leaves and stems of the ficus.
It is not difficult to spot the pest. His body is enveloped in a whitish substance - powdered wax. It looks like cotton wool or felt. The plant is harmed by females and larvae. Infection is indicated not only by the appearance of white cocoons, but also by the outflow of white juice from damaged leaf plates or stem. This makes the surface sticky.
If measures are not taken immediately, the pest can cause drying out not only of individual leaves, but also a stop of the shoots in growth, and then the death of the entire plant.
The reproduction rate of this dangerous pest is enormous, one female, whose body length is on average 3-5 mm, lays up to 600 eggs. They are also found in a soft white cocoon. The process of laying eggs lasts about two weeks, after which the females die.
Young individuals begin to actively feed on plant juices, white threads appear around them and reproduction is repeated. At temperatures above 24 degrees and at high humidity, growth and achievement of puberty in bugs is very fast.
It is very difficult to fight the worm, the cocoon fibers protect insects from direct exposure to insecticides. In addition, the worms adapt very quickly to the agents used. In the initial stage of the defeat, you can use folk methods:
- first wash the leaves with the addition of soap
- then rinse them with running water
- sprinkle with infusion of tangerine or lemon peels
More serious measures to combat this pest are as follows:
- cardinal pruning of all parts of the plant affected by the worm
- two - three times treatment of the plant with the preparations "Decis", "Karbofos" according to the instructions for the preparation, in severe cases, the damaged parts are cut out before spraying
The main prevention is compliance with quarantine after acquiring new plants. Even purchased bouquets should not be placed next to indoor flowers.
How to deal with a scabbard on a ficus benjamin
The scale insects are as serious pests for ficuses as the scale insects. The shield is dangerous because it can go unnoticed for a very long time. Due to the hard skin shield with a waxy coating, covering the insect from above, and the maximum tight fit to the parts of the plant, it is almost impossible to destroy it in an adult state with the help of insecticides. Favorite places for placing scale insects on ficus are:
- bottom of the sheet
- the place of attachment of the petioles to the trunk
With a serious infection, the scale insects can seriously damage the plant and actually destroy it. A sign of such a lesion may be the appearance of a sticky liquid on the leaf plates. Sometimes there is so much of it that it flows from the leaves. Scale control measures begin with manual mechanical removal of adults.
Using a small, stiff brush will make the process easier. You can also use a toothbrush. Manual cleaning is only effective at an early stage. If time is lost, you need to act more radically. For this you need:
- isolate infected ficus
- remove all adult scale insects that could be seen
- cut off the most infected leaves
- spray the plant with Actara solution
- spray the ficus again every other day
- after seven days, carry out the third spraying
Video about pests of ficus Benjamin:
Important! In the summer, it is more convenient to inspect and treat the plant in the fresh air with good sunlight. Regular close examination of ficus is a good prevention of scabbard infestation. The presence of a magnifying glass will increase the reliability of external examinations.
Measures to combat spider mites on ficus benjamin
The spider mite is dangerous in that it cannot be destroyed at one time. If a thin cobweb has become noticeable on the trunk of the ficus, then this is a sure sign of the appearance of a spider mite. In severe cases, the plant can be completely entangled in cobwebs.
If detected in time, it is enough to wash the leaves and shoots of the ficus with soap. After that, hold the plant for three hours and rinse off the solution. Cover the ficus with a bag for a day. From chemicals to get rid of spider mites will help:
Treatment with these drugs is carried out according to the instructions in compliance with safety measures. Superstitious people undeservedly consider ficus unsuitable for growing in residential premises. This is not actually the case. Ficus not only cleans the air well from dust and pollution, but also reduces the number of pathogenic microbes. Therefore, the presence of ficus benjamin in the house will significantly improve the microclimate inside it.