Natural Spider Mite Control

Discussion in 'Plant Problems' started by WashougalWonder, Jul 22, 2010.

  1. WashougalWonder

    WashougalWonder Registered+

    I see many, many threads on spider mite infestations.

    Spider mites live in the environment naturally. The type of mite that bothers us is most prevalent when temperatures stay above 50 degrees. You may see the nests in the grass, in tree branches, on flowers, etc. Spider mites live off the juices that the plant produces which are essentially sugars. The prefer to eat on the bottom side of the leave as it is easier to access the succulent parts of the leaf.

    They also lay their eggs on the bottom side of the leaf. Incubation is 7-14 days, which is an important fact. Control of mites if an infestation occurs, centers more around stopping the hatchlings as few non-toxic's work on mites.

    An infestation can ruin an entire crop or just one plant, depending. Not worth the risk of letting an infestation occur in the first place. If a bad infestation occurs, i.e., webs on the buds, remove the plant as gently as possible so as to not loose any mites on the way out of the grow room. Then destroy the plant and the mites and discard. (The eggs will still hatch). Watch other plants for signs...small dots on most of the leaves. They are only 1/50th of an inch long so they are very hard to see. Remove all the plants and treat as below and sterilize the grow area with a bleach/water solution and allow to dry before putting plants back in.

    Prevention is the best solution to mites. Seven(brand name) seems to be a great perimeter poison to use around the exterior of the grow area and into the air duct openings (while off). Cracks and crevices in the room itself also should get a barrier stream sprayed down for the same reason. Do this about once a month during mite season and occasionally in off season as it also controls other bugs.

    What about inside the grow area? Some folks like to keep the Shell No-Pest Strip in the grow area. Not sure if plants uptake this or not, so will not address the use of it, but it is commonly used. Neem oil is a product of the Neem tree. Natural as natural can be. The only effect on us the consumer, is if used too late it may affect the taste. No issue to us even if smoked.

    Neem can be applied multiple ways. It can be given in the water and the plant will uptake enough to provide the barrier. Myself I prefer to just use foliar spray in the vegitative room only. (My air path is such the flower room is the most protected and room the air is evacuated from, veg room vents to the flower room. During the season I foliar spray the veg plants as soon as they are rooted about every other day. I watch the leaves. Shiny leaves have enough Neem for their life and need no more.

    We do not want to use so much we choke off the stoma of the plants, so do watch the leaves. Allow the spray to dry before repositioning the lights close to the leaves. Some species are less tolerant of Neem, but all do very well with this process.

    Why Neem? Because it prevents the offspring/hatchlings from being able to digest food and it kills them before they can mature and make more eggs. It is critical to understand that the hatchlings must be controlled or the infestation will continue and you will have consistent issues with mites.

    If anyone has a good shot of an infestation with web/nest, it sure would be nice of you to post that to go with this thread.:smokin:

    Link with good knowledge:
    The Life Cycle of Spider Mites |
  2. LOC NAR on probation

    LOC NAR on probation Registered+

    Good read.

    One thing I could add is AZAMAX. It is the concentrate of neem oil. A little easier to work with and has more knock down power. Aquaponicherb says it or neem oil works better if atomized to the right microns.

    If they hatch in 7 to 14 days and then can lay eggs in 5 to 7 days key is to break the life cycle. A good spray every 7 to 10 days kills all new hatchlings before they can lay eggs. Keep spraying untill there are NO signs of mites. Eggs can not be killed and can winter over in soil like conditions.

    We have been fighting mites. First were red spidermites and thrips. easlily done in by pyrithrum bombs from the doctor.
    Then from the same place we got the others came the dreaded Hella mites the Two-Spotted spidermite. These bitches will outlive dam roaches. Watch out cause when you see web from these guy's it means there are moving out, you know spreading to new plants. We had some travel through the air duct from one room to another on the wind of the fan. The plants in the other room didn't know what hit them untill I looked up at the duct fan.

    Be carefull what you bring into your room. What looks like a good deal or favor can be your biggest nightmare.
  3. Dutch Pimp

    Dutch Pimp Up in Smoke

    I use DDT...:thumbsup:.."if you want to make sure every MF'er in the room is dead?"...

    accept no substitutes....:rambohead:
  4. Joshish

    Joshish Registered+

    I'm dealing with spider mites for the first time right now and let me tell you it's HELL! I got them off of a clone from a friend and have since tried everything to get rid of them, nothing worked,

    So here's what I have discovered does work, I've taken all of my plants in vegetation out side and mother nature works her magic, my plants outside are completely spidermite free, Meanwhile my vegetative room is staying empty and has since been clean until August when our outdoor flowering season begins,

    Then I will be putting my "clean" vegetative plants in the two month empty "clean" vegetative room and moving all of my flowering plants outside to finish through mid october or so, meanwhile leaving my flowering room empty and cleaned for a few months,

    I certainly hope this works and I'm confident it will, Spidermites are the devil and even though I acquired a purple kush clone, some rides are not worth the price of admission,

    As for the eggs wintering over, i've never heard of that and will be vigilant upon inspections thanks for the tip!
  5. medicatedman

    medicatedman Registered+

    spider mites

    Thank for all the info everbody. Before I even started growing I bought neem oil, allready had seven also invested in LADYBUGS:thumbsup: and have let them loose in grow room Ive been vegin for 3 1/2 weeks and checking almost ever hour. I will say I will be spraying seven all around the ouside of the room where I have notice a Billion sipder webs, and thanks to the WEEDGODS:) for blessing so far and the ladybugs I do belive they are helping me alot I release them at least once a week and leave them. I have seen a spider in my room once but I am sure it wasen't a mite its was just smaller than a dime I am sure it was a brown reculse ( not sure of spelling) I think it trying to get ladybugs. I still check religiously. Once again thank you for the info on what products to use and where and when.:stoned:
  6. killerweed420

    killerweed420 Registered+

    I've used the HotShot repellent for 2 years and its worked great. Had one major outbreak 2 years ago and within 10 days of hanging the HotShot all bugs were gone.
  7. Salvein211

    Salvein211 Registered+


    I've read in an older holticulturist book that bugs HATE garlic and it says to grow garlic right along side your garden. It may not be much to try when you have a problem in the garden, but if you started out with maybe 1 or 2, it would probably make a difference.
  8. jamessr

    jamessr Registered+

    I just put some tobacco plants in pots next to the plants in the garden last week and the mites seem to have left the scene or atleast stop eating my plants...seems to work..and since it doesn't come into contact with the same soil..mosaic is not an issue.;)
    Last edited: Aug 6, 2010
  9. flowerstarter

    flowerstarter Registered

    thanks guys for the garlic and tabacco ideas.(I want to go more organic/natural) i have been using asatrol for outdoor insects every 2 weeks. if anyone has any info or tips i need it
  10. wolfmanzr

    wolfmanzr Registered

    killing spider mites

    I've been reluctant to use a chemical means to kill mites. I decided to try a drowning method. I flooded my rooms (10x11 total) with Co2. I rented a 50lb co2 cylinder from my local welding supply shop. $5.75 per month rent, 19.95 to fill. anyway the plants like the co2 and the mites can't breathe. All I do is shut off all fans, and open the cylinder to the air, then close the door and come back in the morning. I re-do the co2 about 10 days later to get the eggs that hatched. I have flooded the room twice and so far things are looking fabulous.
  11. budlover13

    budlover13 Registered+

    Where in the world do you live? I thought DDT was outlawed years ago?:wtf:
  12. WashougalWonder

    WashougalWonder Registered+

    Well, it is available to licensed herbicide applicators. I get it through a feed store locally. Few know the tricks of how to get around. For example Crossbow is impossible to get here, UNLESS you know a licensed person, then you can get it by the gallons. Same with Curtail, Weedmaster, an some others. All have very intense chemicals.

    Now, back to spider mites.

    Again, prevention before, and No-pest Strips if you Effed up.
  13. calbunn

    calbunn Registered

    My spider mite problem I found had a lot to do with the high temperature that my HID fixtures were contributing to the room. About a year ago I switched my indoor grow to the 400 watt induction grow lights from the 1000 watt HPS mostly because of the heat and wattage. I've been very satisfied with the canopy penetration and yields from what had been 4 of the 1000 watt HPS to 3 of the 400 watt inda-gro lights. I don't know if they'll find a way back in but so far it seems they don't do well under the lower temperature lights.
  14. calbunn

    calbunn Registered

    theres a 100 watt that works nicely for clone and veg
    Last edited: Oct 14, 2010
  15. WashougalWonder

    WashougalWonder Registered+

    Spider mites thrive in warmer temperatures. Thus, the warm grow room is an awesome place to set up camp.

    Prevention, prevention, prevention.
  16. brynpav

    brynpav Registered

    When you say it's hanging is it a strip?
  17. brynpav

    brynpav Registered

    this is the best idea I've heard yet. Thanks for the post
  18. WashougalWonder

    WashougalWonder Registered+

    Yes it is.

    I am not sure co2 at that level is good for the plants, and getting a bottle of gas big enough to do good takes renting a bottle, I know to fill my co2 it runs me like $30-40 as I remember for my mig welder. Lot more costly than a no pest strip of some sort and the no pest strips do not harm the plant or you when you are in there.
    Last edited: Oct 23, 2010
  19. MJisBadMmkay

    MJisBadMmkay Registered

    Yes, using co2 @ 10,000 ppm for 1 hour will kill mites for good, with no harm done to the plants. If you are already set up with co2, that is absolutely your best and fastest way to take care of the problem, it's the method I now use since acquiring co2 equipment. But if you don't have the equipment, I would not suggest buying all the gear, it's just not cost effective.

    Your next best solution, from personal experience, is the following natural method. I found this on another site, I take no credit whatsoever except that I can completely attest to it's effectiveness. You can dilute it to half strength for seedlings. It does not burn or harm the plants no matter how small or large they are. Just like the original poster, I lightly spray around the inside and outside of the room or cabinet in addition to the plants themselves.

    Ok, here you go, good luck and happy mite killing!

    this stuff kills mites!! its all i use.
    have fun killing those little bugers

    1/4 cup Baking Soda
    1/2 cup Apple Cider vinegar
    1 Tablespoon Lemon Juice
    2 drops dish detergent
    1/4 Teaspoon Epsom Salts

    Take a cup of very hot water and desolve the epsom salts,take rest of ingredients and place in a clean 2 liter bottle and let work out. Add epsom solution. Add water to fill to 48ozs(3/4 full).Shake well.

    TO USE: Cover soil/medium with plastic,with lights off mist plant all over,especialy under leaves,
    Wait 20 mins,then spritz off with clean fresh water shaking as much water off plant as you can.
    The fresh water spritz rinse will remove the solution along with the desolved remains of the mites and their eggs.

    Have fun with your new "Mite Eradicator"

    Note by MrFixit: Water plants 1/2 hour before spraying. This will help keep your plants from absorbing the spray.

    This solution has been tested and used as directed will not burn plants,the rinse is very important though as it removes the spent solution before it can concentrate and burn the plant. It also removes most of the dead mites and eggs so you don't end up smoking them.

    The formula can be diluted further,to 1 liter and it will still kill the mites but isn't as effective at dissolving and removing the mite parts.
    Since removing the mite debris is desirable,I recommend the stronger solution,just remember to rinse and shake.
    This formula is alkaline(about 7.8- so please remember to rinse.

    Mite irradication is absolutely assured and guaranteed if used as directed.
    I've never seen ANYTHING work this well for mite irradication!!
    I used to gas my booths for mites,it worked but they came back,I haven't seen a living mite in a long time now.They haven't come back,partly because of cooler weather,partly because I hosed the Roses that were infecting everything with the formula and wiped out all the mites during testing.
    The only thing I wish I'd done different is,I wish I would have done sections of the Roses and preserved
    some of the mites for later tests.I've had to go searching for victims to test it on and there just aren't any left!! I did find some victims for my final tests in the park where we have meetings,the plants by the river are pretty sickly and infested(were I should say,I walked around with ONE pint bottle and cleaned up most of the area.LOL)
    If news of this formula were to become widespread,mites would become an endangered species!!!So GOOD HUNTING !
  20. WashougalWonder

    WashougalWonder Registered+

    I just really get off on all these exhorbitant ways to resolve mite issues. I would be very concerned spraying that concoction on my plants no matter how much you attest to it. Again, the CO2 is expensive.

    For Crying Out Loud, No pest strips work fast, are cheap, and if you are too lazy to use or buy or find Neem oil, you deserve mites in my book. They will not harm the plants, nor have effect on the end result.

    ADDITIONALLY If you have mites you have not been doing your job right. I again express that prevention is by far the most important aspect of this. You prevent the mite infestation (with neem and exterior pesticides) and you don't have to use all these expensive ways to rid yourselves of them.

    Please do not confuse Newbies with bizarre information like we have been getting posted recently.

    Last edited: Oct 24, 2010

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