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  #1  
Old 08-19-2018, 08:49 AM
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Default Mealybug advice needed!!

Hi, I have a couple questions re getting rid of these little nasties... I have Bayer 3 in 1 spray- how obsessive should I be with it? Do I really drench the plant? The bark, too? I also have some of the granules that I have used on a rose bush outside; can I put these in the pots? Is it possible to OD the plant if I am using both forms? I don't know where the bugs came from but I suspect a succulent I bought at Lowes this year- that's where I first saw any, anyway. Grrr...
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Old 08-19-2018, 09:28 AM
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Unfortunately many plants sold in big-box stores now come with mealybugs.

Yes, you need to drench the plant and soil. Some people would repot to fresh medium. Spraying once should be enough; if it is not, repeat at the first sign of infestation.
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Last edited by estación seca; 08-19-2018 at 05:40 PM..
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Old 08-19-2018, 10:56 AM
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What about the granules? Would they help control any that might be in the medium? I'm thinking more of prevention here; like repotting the ones that I see the mealies on, and using some granules on others that maybe don't have any yet.
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Old 08-19-2018, 02:46 PM
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I would avoid the granular rose systemic as the fertilizer is quite strong. When the changed the formula from six-week to eight week some years ago, I lost some of my plants as it burned the roots. They sell systemic/fertilizer spikes for houseplants that might work better.
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Old 08-19-2018, 07:43 PM
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Isolate, discard all old medium, drench from roots to leaf tips, clean and repot, drench the new medium.

After that, spray any exposed parts of the plant at weekly intervals for a month.
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Old 09-13-2018, 10:03 AM
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I feel your pain. Before I lost my GH due to a heater malfunction, I was battling Mealybugs. They had infested a Miltonia I had (the only one). I was using a commercial spray that listed Mealybugs as one insect it was applicable for. I was having very little success.

I have found that Mealybugs will not infest Cattlyas due to the bulb leaf being so tough.

Many years ago, I had a christmas cactus that was infested. The cactus was an heirloom from my Grandmother so I wanted to keep it alive. I used a spray that had edible fish oil as the active ingredient. It took many weeks of weekly spraying before I won the battle. (The aroma of the fish oil is something to experience.)

FWIW: The cactus is still alive today. My Grandmother died in 1962 at which time my mother took possession of the cactus. She kept it alive until her death in 1995 when I took over its care. It is growing well except that I cannot seem to get it to bloom.
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Old 09-13-2018, 10:29 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dumb chemist View Post
I feel your pain. Before I lost my GH due to a heater malfunction, I was battling Mealybugs. They had infested a Miltonia I had (the only one). I was using a commercial spray that listed Mealybugs as one insect it was applicable for. I was having very little success.

I have found that Mealybugs will not infest Cattlyas due to the bulb leaf being so tough.

Many years ago, I had a christmas cactus that was infested. The cactus was an heirloom from my Grandmother so I wanted to keep it alive. I used a spray that had edible fish oil as the active ingredient. It took many weeks of weekly spraying before I won the battle. (The aroma of the fish oil is something to experience.)

FWIW: The cactus is still alive today. My Grandmother died in 1962 at which time my mother took possession of the cactus. She kept it alive until her death in 1995 when I took over its care. It is growing well except that I cannot seem to get it to bloom.
They are phototropic. They require 12 hours of uninterrupted darkness to bloom. Mine bloom twice a year. My mother's also met with an untimely fate and I had to start over.

I don't know how new this product is but I bought it for my garden and ended up using it on my orchids. It's called Azamax and available from Amazon, among other places. It is purified Neem oil. The active ingredient is Azadirachtin. It's a "Botanical insecticide, Miticide and Nematicide." OMRI approved "Repellant, Antifeedant and Insect Growth Regulator."

The problem with granulated systemic is that it works fine in soil or moss but runs out through bark quickly. Perhaps tying it in layers of cheesecloth as a satchet and inserting it laying it on top might work...my thoughts, worth what you paid for them.
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Old 09-13-2018, 12:05 PM
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Mealies can be a pain to eradicate, as they can populate the root system as well as the visible parts of the plant.

I prefer acephate over imidicloprid, but am a fan of Azamax, as well.

Whatever insecticide you use, follow OW's suggestion and absolutely soak the plant AND the potting medium at least three times at weekly intervals.
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Old 09-13-2018, 12:06 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dumb chemist View Post
The [Christmas] cactus is still alive today.... It is growing well except that I cannot seem to get it to bloom.
Congratulations on keeping it for so longl and what a wonderful heirloom. Christmas cacti (Schlumbergera species and hybrids) are triggered to flower by two conditions.

One is completely dark nights in fall and early winter. Turning on a light even once in the same room as the plant, or a street or porch light through a window, prevent blooming. (Poinsettias require the same treatment for Christmas flowering.) You can cover the plant with a dense cloth at night. This is what Poinsettia growers do.

The other trigger is nights at 55 degrees F / 12C for 6 weeks. Light does not matter if the chill method is used. It is risky to leave them outside in areas where there may be frost.

Grandma kept the plant on the porch in summer. In winter she had Grandpa bring it down to the basement, and set under one of the few ground-level windows. Not only was the basement chilly; nobody went down there and turned on a light at night.
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Old 09-13-2018, 12:08 PM
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That was my grandma's method too. Ray, glad to hear from you. Can you post a separate update?
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