Growery — How to Kill Spider Mites — Get Rid of Spider Mite Infestation on Cannabis (Marijuana)

Spider mite on the apple tree — control measures, how to fight and get rid once and for all


Composed August 2, 2009 by geokills

Early stages of a mite infestation:

Spider mites are a common pest to be found feasting upon our lovely marijuana plants. They flourish in warm (greater than 85°F) and dry (less than 60% rH) environments, generally living on the underside of a plant’s leaves and causing damage by puncturing the plant cells in order to feed upon the vital life juices inside! These evil doers can make quick work of a crop with their short generational cycle (about one week in between hatchings and one more week for the mite to reach adulthood), and should therefore be dealt with as soon as possible in order to avoid serious damage, including the potential death of your plants.

Prevention is better than the cure!
It is always better to prevent an infestation by practicing clean growing techniques.

  • Sterilize your indoor grow room prior to growing (and in between harvests) with a dilute bleach solution.
  • Keep things clean by removing dead plant material or other organic material from your grow space.
  • Keep your indoor cultivation tools separate from your outdoor tools.
  • Do not enter your indoor garden after having worked in your outdoor garden.
  • Keep pets out of your grow area, wash hands and wear clean clothes whenever entering the grow area.
  • If possible, use a closed grow room with a HEPA filter installed on the incoming air duct.
  • In essence, just do everything you can to keep the grow environment (including yourself) clean and contaminant free!

Signs of Spider Mites :
Know what to look for when diagnosing the early stages of a spider mite infestation.

  • Small (pin point) yellow or brown dots on the leaves of the plant (as shown in this image).
  • Very small strands of silk webbing on the plant, particularly underneath the leaves.
  • Small (pin point) white dots on the underside of leaves (these are the eggs).
  • Little buggers (depending on them ol’ peepers of yours, you may need a magnifying glass to spot them!)

These images depict the advanced stages of an infestation, after the
mite population has reproduced through several generations. During
the early stages of an infestation, you may not notice the tiny mites,
but instead may notice small dots (stippling) appearing on your leaves.
Images showing the early stage of an infestation can be found at the
beginning of this document.

Treating a Spider Mite Infestation :
These practices can help control and eliminate a mite infestation when implemented carefully and deliberately.

I will begin by listing simple treatments and progress toward more complicated/severe treatments that may be required for heavily infested plants. The first course of action is to isolate infested plants in order to reduce the possibility of mite migration to mite-free plants. Keep your humidity levels up, but be careful if you’re already in flowering as you don’t want to induce fungal growth in your buds! Remember to water your plants 1/2 hour before spraying , as this will help reduce the amount of spray solution that is absorbed by your plants.

  • Soap & Water — Mix a dilute solution of non anti-bacterial dish soap and water, and spray (fine mist) the leaves of your plant, particularly the underside where the mites like to live. May require multiple applications depending on how well you can cover each individual leaf of the plant. Make sure to rinse off the leaves with plain water 20 minutes after spraying in order to prevent the soap from clogging up the stomata on the leaves, which will stunt plant growth if not cared for.

Soap & Water Plus Version 1 — Gather 1/4 cup baking soda, 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar, 1 tablespoon lemon juice, 2 drops dish detergent & 1/4 teaspoon epsom salt. Take one cup of hot water to dissolve epsom salts and pour into a clean 2 liter container with the rest of the ingredients. Add water to fill to 48 ounces (a 2 liter bottle will be 3/4 full) and shake well. Put into a spray bottle and cover your soil/medium with plastic. With the lights off, mist the plant all over concentrating on the underside of leaves. Wait 20 minutes and sprits off with clean fresh water, shaking as much water off the plant as you can. Solution is alkaline and rinsing is important in order to remove mites and eggs, and to prevent the solution from burning the plant leaves. Test on a small portion of the plant and wait 24 hours to observe before dousing the whole thing. If you see plant damage, dilute with more plain water and test again.

Soap & Water Plus Version 2 — Gather 1/2 cup baking soda, 1 cup vinegar, 3 tablespoons lemon juice, 2 drops dish soap, mix and dilute with plain water to 40 fluid ounces. Use in the same manner as Version 1. Shown to work both indoor and out, with success on spider mites, thrips, aphids, clover mites, grass gnats and mosquitos.

Soap & Water Variations — Since all plants will have varying degrees of sensitivity to these sprays, you can try to create your own by mixing water with a small amount of dish soap, as well as garlic, cinnamon, clove oil and lemon juice.

Rubbing Alcohol — This poisonous liquid can kill mites and evaporate relatively quickly in order to reduce harm to plants. Varying degrees of success have been reported with solutions ranging from 1:3 (light) to 1:1 (strong) ratios of rubbing alcohol to water.

Predatory Mites — These mites do not feed on plants but on other mites. Predatory mites can be mail-ordered from a horticultural warehouse or purchased online from gardening vendors. Three of the most common mites used to kill and control spider mites include Phytoseiulus persimilis , Metaseiulus occidentalis , and Phytoseiulus longpipes . The Phytoseiulus persimilis variety is nice because these guys cannibalizes on themselves after eating the problem mites, thereby reducing their own population naturally after they’ve finished their work. Phytoseiulus longpipes can stand higher temperatures, so if your grow space is above 89°F, you should try to find this variety.

Miticides — When all else has failed, miticides will be one of the most effective forms of spider mite treatment. You should generally try not to use these more than necessary, as they are considerably more toxic than all of the above treatments, and can also cause resistant strains of mites if used repeatedly over time on the same population of mites.

Pyrethrins are natural organic compounds that provide potent insecticidal activity. While pyrethrins are slightly toxic, they are not very dangerous to humans and have been used as an organic crop dusting agent in agricultural farmling as well as indoor agriculture for some time. You can also find them in some shampoos designed to remove lice/ticks from humans and pets. Riptide 5.0% Pyrethrin is a common solution that works well.

Avid is a miticide/insecticide formulated by Syngenta corporation that will effectively kill spider mite populations. However, it is considerably more toxic than pyrethrin based insecticides. and should never be applied to plants that have already started their flowering phase. Avid is suitable for outdoor use while the plants are still in their vegetative state.

I hope that this has helped you to understand spider mite infestation and how to effectively deal with it. Most methods of treatment do not kill the mite eggs and will require re-treatment about 7 — 10 days after initial treatment. I’m sure that once you have dealt with an infestation, you will understand why prevention through cleanliness is well worth the effort if you want to have a hassle free, productive and bountiful grow.

Good luck and if you have any other questions, don’t hesitate to post on our forums for more help!

If you notice display or informational problems with this document, send me a message (you must be registered to do so) or submit a support ticket.

Thanks for reading
— geokills

Fruit Trees and Homemade Pest

Remedies for Organic Gardening

Here we look at fruit trees and homemade pest remedies for common pests and diseases.

Both commercial and home made organic pest control for dealing with fruit tree pests and diseases can be effective if used correctly.

The best cure is prevention, and the most effective way of preventing pest or disease problems in your fruit trees is to keep them healthy.

Here are a few general tips for caring for fruit trees:

  • Correct any soil mineral imbalances and condition your soil properly with adequate organic matter.
  • Mulch your trees in spring or autumn (both for young trees) with nutritious materials such as seaweed, wool, straw and pea hay. Keep the area immediately around the trunk free of mulch or you’ll risk collar-rot.
  • Feed your trees with a layer of compost put down before mulching, plus a scatter of poultry manure or blood and bone over the top of the mulch if they look like they need it.

If you feed too much of these high nitrogen fertilizers though, you will end up with leaf growth rather than fruit, and may actually encourage pests.

You could also provide adequate nitrogen by sowing a living mulch of clover around your tree in winter.

  • Give infested trees a tonic of liquid manure made from nettles, compost, comfrey or seaweed used as a foliar spray or soil conditioner.
  • Don’t prune your trees in winter as the open wound provides an entry point for diseases. It’s better to prune in summer and then only as necessary.
  • Don’t cultivate the soil around your fruit trees. It disrupts the feeder root system and can shock your tree, making it more susceptible to pests and diseases.

Fruit Tree Companion Planting

Pesky insect pests often rely on smell to find their target plants.

Fruit tree companion planting with aromatic herbs can help confuse pests and reduce the number that find their way to your precious plant.

Try growing strong smelling herbs such as chives, henbit, Coriander, garlic, marigold, tansy and mustard under your trees.

DEALING WITH COMMON PESTS AND DISEASES Now we come to specific common diseases and pests of fruit trees and homemade pest solutions:


Aphids are the bottom of the garden food chain, and so are the main fare for a wide variety of other critters. For natural pest control of aphids you have to allow them to build up for several weeks before thinking about active control, or you will starve their predators before they have had a chance to get established!

I tried this myself and found that the waiting game paid off with a veritable army of aphid predators rushing to the feast.

Aphid predators are many and include:

There are many species of wasp and hover fly like insects that adore eating aphids either as adults or larvae. Aphids parasitized by Chalcid wasp larvae will look dark and “mummified”. Hoverfly larvae look just like a little caterpillar.

Encourage those that feed exclusively on nectar as adults by letting parsley, carrot and fennel flower and growing native plants near your gardens. Buckwheat, Poached Egg Plant, Sunflower, Yarrow and Wild Angelica are good for attracting Hover Flies.

Both adult and larval Lady Bugs (or Lady Birds) exclusively eat aphids – up to 200 a day! The larvae look like a dark spotted grub.

Larvae of the graceful Lacewing are fearsome little critters that resemble a tiny Earwig in shape with a good set of jaws at the front.

Lacewing larvae are voracious aphid munchers! Lacewing eggs are interesting – they come in a group of little white eggs, each suspended on its own delicate upright “stem”.

The adults are tiny, delicate flies that feed on nectar. Their young are small brown maggots that love eating aphids as well as mites, scale, white flies and thrips.

Predatory midges are commercially available and are often used effectively in greenhouses for year-round control.


All Purpose Soap Spray

A good orchard spray that controls sucking mites, aphids, Rutherglen Bug and thrips but does not seem to affect spiders can be made as follows:

Just grate 2/3 of a cake of soap (save up those pesky little bits left over until you have enough) into 4.5 liters (1 gallon) of hot water. For a more effective recipe, add 1 tspn white oil, 300mls of old cooking oil and 2 tspns of caustic soda to the mix while it is still hot.

Use it once it has cooled to room temperature and only spray it on parts of the trees affected by pests. Avoid spraying anything onto plants during hot periods of the day.

To make larger quantities (enough for 100 trees) combine 18 gal (68 liters) of waste cooking oil (ask at your local fish and chip shop), 1 liter of white oil (optional), 9 gal (34 litres) of water, 3 kg (6.6 lbs) caustic soda and ½ box of washing machine soap powder in a large cooking pot and simmer gently for 3 hours.

Pour into containers to cool and solidify, then use as a spray at the rate of 2 kg soap to 20 liters of water.

When it comes to fruit tree diseases black leaves are really primarily a pest problem rather than a disease.

Black Sooty Mold is common in aphid-infested trees, especially citrus. This is because it grows on a honey mist produced by aphids higher up in the tree that drifts down onto the leaves below.

You’ll probably also find a lot of ants on your trees with these black leaves. They are there to “milk” the sweet sap from the aphids, and actively protect their little herds from predators like Lady Bugs and Lacewing larvae.

You can keep ants off the tree by greasing around the base of the trunk with a thick layer of Vaseline or a skirt of sump-oil soaked rag.

As for the aphids, just deal with as described above.

Fruit Tree Crinkle Leaf Disease

Leaf curl disease is caused by a fungus, and particularly attacks peaches, but will also affect almonds and apricots, resulting in a deformed, crinkled leaf.

This is a useful fungicide:

Suspend 90 g (3 oz) of copper sulfate in the toe of an old stocking overnight.

Blend with 100 g (3.3 oz) of slaked lime, and 4.5 liters (1.2 gallons) of water. Add a further 4.5 liters of water and use immediately. It is useful for leaf curl, especially at the bud stage in the first year to conserve the scarce early leaves.

Also good on vege crops against potato and tomato blights, black spot on beans.

Do not use every year as excess copper will tie up other soil minerals, and copper toxicity can also result.

With Fruit Fly in fruit trees and homemade pest control ideas it’s hard to give you a sure-fire solution.

If you happen to live outside of a Fruit Fly area you are blessed. They are a real problem for us folks who don’t!
The main fruit fly pests in Australia are Queensland fruit fly, native to rainforest areas of Australia’s north-east coast, and Mediterranean fruit fly found only in Western Australia.

Want to know how to get rid of Fruit Flies? Forget it! The best you can hope for is to minimize the damage they do to your fruit, and this requires a combination of different strategies:

The life cycle of a Fruit Fly is similar to that of the ordinary house fly and can be complete from eggs to adult in just 4 weeks. The mated female fly lays eggs in your fruit, and after the maggot has wrought its destruction, it drops to the ground, spending a short period as a pupa in the soil under the tree before hatching out again as an adult.

Chooks (as well as Guinea Fowl) will happily scratch around and feast on the pupae and newly hatched adults (it takes a day for their wings to harden enough for flight) so incorporate a chicken run amongst susceptible fruit trees during the fruiting season.


When the adult female Fruit Fly pierces the skin of the fruit and lays her eggs, the wound either weeps or leaves a dimple.

You can arrest the life cycle by removing affected fruit from the tree and sealing them into a black rubbish bin bag and leaving them in the sun for a few weeks before composting them or feeding them to your livestock.


I once lived in a house that had a beautiful old apricot tree in the garden. But we never got to taste a single apricot, as all were ruined by Fruit Fly! Then I moved to where there were several varieties of plum, not one of which was affected. Fruit Fly rely on being able to pierce the skin of the fruit to infect it, so fruit with soft skin is more susceptible than that with tougher skin.

The most susceptible fruit varieties are figs, apples, pears, loquats, guavas, feijoas, cherries, stone fruit (especially apricots, peaches and nectarines) and even vegetables such as tomatoes and capsicum.

Fruit Fly resistant varieties include avocado (except thin-skinned Fuerte and Rincon), banana, blueberry, citrus, grapes, kiwifruit, lychee, mulberry, nashi pear, passionfruit, paw paw, pomegranate and tamarillo.


An effective Fruit Fly barrier must have a weave of less than 2 mm. Suitable materials are mosquito netting, gauzy curtain fabric, shade cloth and fly screen mesh.

You can drape it over the whole tree with it during fruiting (if you are planning on this approach either pick dwarf varieties or keep your tree pruned short) supported by a frame made of poly pipe arches. However, it will also screen out some of the sunlight.

Alternatively, you can make (or buy) special sleeves sized to tie around bunches of fruit on the tree. Commercial Fruit Fly exclusion bags are made of cloth or waxed paper. You should put them on as soon as fruit starts to form, and could combine the job with fruit thinning at the same time.

Fruit Fly barriers have the added advantage that they also exclude other pests such as birds and possums.


Bad news for controlling Fruit Fly in fruit trees and homemade pest solutions… Homemade Fruit Fly traps only generally trap the male flies, and are only effective while they are fresh. Nearly all the insects they trap are not even Fruit Fly. Their only practical use is as a monitoring tool to see how many Fruit Flies are around.

You can make a homemade Fruit Fly trap by hanging a plastic bottle in your tree with a small (1cm) entrance hole drilled near the top. You can bait it with a “tea” containing vegemite, urine or vanilla essence. Painting a bit of color around the entrance hole will attract more flies – yellow for the Mediterranean Fruit Fly and blue for the Queensland Fruit Fly.

Commercial baits are also available but again, as their action is based on pheromones, only attract the male flies. They are a feasible long-term way to reduce the population only if you live in an isolated area with few other sources of either fruit or Fruit Fly around.

Organic splash baits like Naturalure are good too. They are sprayed either on the foliage or onto a piece of plywood suspended in the tree early in the fruiting season and must be applied weekly (and after rain) to work well.

They are effective on both male and female flies and work by luring them with a specific protein feed attractant that is laced with a natural insecticide that kills the fly once ingested. Beneficial insects are not harmed.

Codling Moth can be a problem for apple growers in Australia that appears in spring and gets worse by Christmas as the population builds up.

The best approach is multi-faceted:

In spring (late October) put out some traps to check for the presence of male Codling Moths.


Dissolve 1 part sugar and 1 part molasses into a jar of water and cover with a 3/16 inch mesh (this will effectively trap the moths but not bees). Check daily.

If you see a few males then treat susceptible trees as follows:


Selectively spray the little clusters of blossom on your trees with a Pyrethrum based spray.


Band the trunk and larger branches of your apple trees by tying on 6 inch wide strips of cardboard (the type with a corrugated layer) in November, late December and February. These will provide attractive sites for the Codling Moth caterpillars to make their cocoons. Just check them for larvae and kill those you find.

7 Ways to get rid of dust mite allergy

What Is a Dust Mite?

One of the most common root causes of asthma and allergies is often related to dust mites. These tiny, spider-looking creatures, measure only about one-quarter to one-third of a millimeter. They cannot be seen through naked eyes. A microscope is required to study these dust mites. Dust mites can withstand temperatures between 68 and 77 degrees Fahrenheit (20 to 25 degrees Celsius) and thrive in humidity levels from 70% to 80%. Currently, at least 13 species of dust mites have been classified.

The environmental conditions inside your house are favorable for their survival. They live on sloughed-off human skin. These tiny flakes of skin penetrate in the inner layers of carpets, bedding, stuffed toys and on the furniture. Dust mites thrive in such areas, where they can easily feed on the shredded skin particles. On an average, each individual shed up to 1.5 grams of skin in a day, which is sufficient for the survival of a million dust mites.

Dust Mite Allergy

Approximately 20 million Americans suffer from dust mite allergy. House dust mite allergy is a common term when considering asthma, eczema and rhinitis (hay fever). There is a strong relationship between dust mites and allergies; they can trigger allergy through various modes. It’s the waste products from the mites that are the true allergens and cause unfavorable susceptible reactions in any individual. It has been suspected that the waste droppings produced by the mites includes certain proteins that result in allergies. Hence, the droppings trigger the dust mite allergy symptoms even after the mite dies. Simply killing the mites may not be beneficial, however, it will control the numbers that may reduce the symptoms of eczema.

Dust mite allergy symptoms

Dust Allergy Symptoms

  • Sneezing
  • Cough
  • Runny/Stuffy nose
  • Irritation in nose, mouth or throat
  • Itchy, red or watery eyes
  • Postnasal drip (a flow of mucus from behind your nose into your throat)

If it aggravates your asthma, the symptoms caused include:

  • Difficulty in breathing
  • Stiffness or pain in the chest
  • Coughing or wheezing
  • Difficulty while sleeping

Measures to prevent house dust mite allergy

Dust mites can’t be avoided completely so this could be of great help if you could change your home environment. An important step towards getting rid of dust mite allergy includes limiting the exposure of the bedrooms and living areas to dust. It is necessary to implement certain precautionary measures to ensure the allergen count is low. This can be as simple as using an allergy-proof cover for your bedding and washing after regular intervals.

Although, dust mites thrive anywhere in the house, bedrooms are found to be the places where they mostly live. You can simply follow certain dust allergy home remedies to manage the allergic symptoms.

Dust Allergy Management and Treatment

1. Allergy-proof mattresses covers

The covers are designed using a specific material that has minutest pores to prevent the dust mites and their waste product from entering. They are even termed allergen-impermeable because of their fabric property. You can simply count on cost-effective options like plastic or vinyl covers. However, those who find them uncomfortable can check for other available allergen-impermeable fabric covers.

2. Use hot water to wash your sheets

Make sure that you use hot water that’s at least 130 degrees Fahrenheit or more to wash your sheets and blankets. A weekly wash will help kill dust mites.

3. Get rid of all fabric types

Try not to use wall-to-wall carpeting, curtains, blinds, upholstered furniture for the bedroom. Instead of curtains, you can preferably make use of roll-type shades on your windows and use those fabrics that can be easily washed after regular intervals in hot water:

4. Prefer someone insusceptible to dust mite allergy

If you are allergic to dust mites, ask someone who is not vulnerable to such allergies. In case that is not possible, wear a mask when you are dusting the room or using a vacuum cleaner. Dusting and vacuum cleaner disturbs the dust particles in the air. Hence, prefer doing these chores when you can keep the bedroom undisturbed for sometime afterward.

5. Make use of specialized HEPA filter vacuum cleaners

If your vacuum, cleaner doesn’t come with a HEPA filter, you can check for your nearest specialty vacuum stores or an allergy supply to purchase the filters.

6.Damp-wipe and vacuum

Make sure to damp-wipe and vacuum all the surfaces every week

7. Maintain a humidity level

Try to maintain a humidity level less than 50% in your homes. You can increase ventilation in reduce humidity. e.g. Use exhaust fans in kitchens and bathrooms.

How To Treat Dust Mite Allergy

Dust mites are an extremely common allergen. They prosper in people’s homes, especially in bedrooms and other frequently used rooms. They can’t be seen but there are millions of them in every unorganized or unprepared home that stimulate year-round allergies and asthma. They live in your bed, cushion, carpets, furniture, bedding, clothing and anywhere else they can feed on dead flakes of human skin. It’s almost impossible to completely eliminate or eradicate these tiny pests. However, you can greatly diminish them by taking steps to control them.

There are a variety of ways you can minimize your exposure to dust mites. Some few surprisingly simple steps can really assist you to lead a healthier, and symptom less life.

  • Cover and enclose your mattress and pillows in dust-mite-proof covers.
  • Wash your bedding at least once a week in hot water or with All Temperature Laundry Detergent
  • Use a High Efficiency (HEPA) Air Purifier to remove allergens from air.
  • Install a quality disposable filter in your central air system.
  • Treat all carpets, drapery, upholstery and other fabrics with a dust mite eliminator.
  • Clean thoroughly once a week with a quality HEPA vacuum.
  • Dehumidifier to keep the relative indoor humidity below 55%.

Here are the links for the studies for Dust Mite Allergy:

See also:  Dust In Apartment: How It Appears And How To Get Rid Of It, Easy Home Clean
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