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Thread: Another pest…

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    Aklys joossa's Avatar
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    Unhappy Another pest…

    My Red Dragon has been sending up shock traps. I was afraid I was over watering it so I slowly reduced the amount of water I apply since a month ago, but the shock traps kept coming. Today, I decided to uproot it and change its growing media (also in hopes of finding a possible answer to the cause of its illness).

    As I was cleaning off the peat from the rhizome with water I saw a small white object on the rhizome I thought it was a small piece of perlite, but after spraying it with water it didn’t come off. After taking a closer look I found that it was some sort of bug. It began to walk on the rhizome and it looked like a miniature version of a rolly polly or a Sow Bug, except it was pale white and very very small (about 1-3mm long). After further inspection, I found several of these things on the rhizome (about four or five); they were much smaller though. Using a dissection probe, I flicked them off the rhizome and repotted it the pot.

    Anyone know what these white larva-rolly polly looking things are? Could they be damaging the plant? Is there a way to get rid of them?

    Thanks for the help.
    -Joel from Southern California


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    mealie bugs? I look at it this way, if there are bugs ON my CPs and not IN my CPs then I have a problem that gets sprayed.
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    Hello, I must be going... Not a Number's Avatar
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    Yeah, sounds like mealybugs. They're related to scale insect and cause the same damage as scale or aphids by sucking the juices from your plant. They do look a bit like the sow bugs that can't roll up completely into a ball. Instead of a hard scale they have a white waxy fur. The females will form a thin white cottony mass for their eggs. You have a bad infestation if you see this.

    They relocate when disturbed so it is unlikely you got them all. They can also get into the roots of your plants and are difficult at best to get rid of at that point. You probably need to treat all your plants as they spread.

    You can try drowning the plant for a few days. Ladybugs will eat them, particularly the black ladybug "Mealybug Destroyer" from Australia. Expensive.

    A systemic insecticide like acephate (Orthene) or imidacloprid (Merit/Provado) should take care of them unless they are in the roots.
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    Stay chooned in for more! Clint's Avatar
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    I don't mean to hijack the topic, but can I use Ortho Dursban (chlorpyrifos phosphorothioate) in a pinch? It's an organophosphate, so will this add phosphates to the media?

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    Hello, I must be going... Not a Number's Avatar
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    FWIW acephate (Orthene) is an organophosphate.
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    Aklys joossa's Avatar
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    cyclopse

    Mealybugs never crossed my mind, I guess I drew a blank. They looked exactly as pictured here:

    (So I guess that takes care of the ID.)

    One last question: Is it safe to apply the insecticide directly on the rhizome and roots? There were no bugs on the foliage only on the rhizome; also the plantís leaves and traps are very small and weak, so I would have to apply the Orthene to the rhizome, right?

    Thanks for the help.

    pests!
    -Joel from Southern California


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    Hello, I must be going... Not a Number's Avatar
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    Soil drench systemic versions might work. The spray versions are designed more to be absorbed through or coat the foliage so it may not get down to the roots.

    http://www.ces.ncsu.edu/depts/ent/no...19/note19.html

    http://mrec.ifas.ufl.edu/lso/Mealybugs.htm
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    Kung Fu Fighting! NeciFiX's Avatar
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    Indeed, mealy bugs, I use a powder but soil drenches seem to work better. Find one that takes care of all those annoying white bugs, Mealy bugs, aphids, whitefly, etc.
    - NeciFiX

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