How to treat red spider mites on indoor pepper?

Pepper, bell    MI

It seems I tempted fate by saying in earlier posts how well my pepper plant was doing indoors over winter as over the past week or so it started developing symptoms of spider mites (the leaves at the top of the plant were all speckled with white and I could see tiny webs forming between leaves). After a day or so I started to see the mites themselves marching merrily over the webs, I sprayed with an organic insecticidal soap and will repeat earlier next week. My question is how did these little blighters get in? All my other plants are fine, no webs and they have been fine all winter so where did the mites come from? Is the insecticidal soap enough to treat with? What do you use?

Posted by: Abby (7 points) Abby
Posted: March 22, 2013


Nice pictures, by the way. They really help show the problem. With this much webbing and visible mite presence, it is likely that the mites were there a long time, possibly for months. Spider mites can hang aroung undetected for weeks, especially when house temperatures are relatively cool. Once they multiply a bit, it seems they explode overnight. Where did they come from? Usually they come indoors in the fall. If the plant was brought indoors, they probably were on it all along. If you have other plants, it would be good to check them for infestation too. What to do? It takes some persistence on your part - insecticidal soap helps but can take awhile to get results. You can speed the recovery by giving the plant a gentle shower (emphasizing gentle) in the sink or bathtub - this type of physical removal makes a big dent in the population. You can't really fix the damaged leaves, but the plant should perk up with some new leaves.

Posted by: Charlie B. (4 points) Charlie B.
Posted: March 22, 2013

Abby commented,
Thanks for the info Charlie, I didn't realize that they were likely there all along! Good to know, I keep checking the plants every day and so far so good!
over 9 years ago.

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