Pest Control

Get Rid of Scale the Ecofriendly Way


If you see small, hard or soft, round or oval bumps on stems, leaves, or fruit, you are probably looking at an adult female hiding under a hard shell and sucking the sap out of your plant.

It can be a soft scale or a hard (armored) scale, but regardless, unless you take steps to get rid of scale, your plant will wilt and die.

The female scale lays its eggs under her, and when the eggs hatch, the crawling nymphs which have legs crawl away to establish themselves in another spot.

Pretty soon not only will the plant’s leaves become yellowed and distorted but also you will notice clear, sticky honeydew (a byproduct of their feeding) on the leaves and even dripping off onto the ground (or floor).

Five Ecofriendly Ways to Get Rid of Scale:

Get Rid of Scale on Outdoor Plants:

1. Attract native parasites and predators such as lady beetles and parasitic wasps to get rid of scale for you.

2. Scrub scales gently from twigs with a soft brush and soapy water and rinse well

3. In order to avoid overwintering nymphs from becoming adults, spray with dormant oil in late spring before the trees begin opening their buds. All fruit trees should get this treatment in late spring to get rid of scale AND other overwintering insect eggs.

(If you want to know more about how to spray with dormant spray, check how to spray fruit trees step by step. If you want to get ideas on what to use as your spring spray, check fruit tree spray: natural, organic, or natural

4. Prune and DESTROY branches and twigs that have become significantly infected. (Do not put in compost).

5. In the summer, apply summer horticultural oil or the natural homemade spray identified in Number 2.

Get Rid of Scale on Indoor Plants:

1. If you have a small infestation, you can get rid of scale by scraping the scales off your plants with your fingernail.

2. Alternatively, you can get rid of a small infestation of scale by wiping down the leaves with a damp cloth.

3. Some people take a cotton swab or even a never-used small facial sponge, dip it in alcohol, and then dot each scale to get rid of the scale. Be sure to include the underside of the pot where some immature insects may be hiding.

4. Another way to get rid of scale is to mix 1 tsp of all-purpose biodegradable chemical-free concentrated cleaner with 1 pint of water and spray the plant thoroughly. Be sure to spray both sides of the leaf.

5. Finally you can use this homemade oil spray solution to spray your plant thoroughly:

a.First, pour 125 ml of pure biodegradable liquid soap into a blender and add 250 ml of vegetable oil with it.
b.Then mix both ingredients together well and store them in a jar in your cupboard. If you put this mixture in a fridge, the oil might congeal.
c.When you wish to spray, dilute 1 tablespoon of this mixture into 1 liter of water. (If you have chlorinated water, drain your water for at least one hour before you make this mix, and let your water stand so that the chlorine can evaporate before you use it. )
d.With this new mixture, you can spray your plant to get rid of scale. Make sure you spray under the leaves too.

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