Spider Mites on my indoor hot pepper plants

brazenspiderFebruary 18, 2009

I haven't been paying enough attention to my pepper plants - yesterday I looked closely and found spider mites on two of the plants. I went over the leaves and tried to wipe off all of the leaves and get rid of the webs. I've searched the boards here and read about natural predators and Avid. Avid is out of my price range. I live in an apartment with cats and introducing more bugs really isn't something I want to do. Can I get rid of the spider mites just by continuing to spray the leaves and going over the plant? Do I need to worry about spider mites infesting any new plants I start inside? I would rather get rid of the two pepper plants than risk every plant I start inside. I appreciate any ideas. Thanks!

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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

There are some formulations of Avid that are labeled for edible crops, but absolutely none that should ever be used inside the home or applied by unprotected persons. Avid is highly toxic.

ANYHOO, it can be difficult to get rid of a bad spider mite infestation, but worth trying. A combination of water sprays, showers, alcohol/water mists can work to control the little pests. It will be next to impossible to completely rid your plants of the mites, so keep up the treatments.

Another crummy thing about spider mites is that they are very easy to spread from plant to plant. They are readily transferred by our hands, tools, watering equipment, pets, etc. Exercise great caution and keep a close eye out on those plant that you think are not infested.

    Bookmark   February 18, 2009 at 10:25AM
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Thanks. Can I rid my apartment of the infestation of the mites if I get rid of the 2 pepper plants? They are my only indoor plants now, but I want to start a ton of vegetables and flowers indoors next month. It sounds like getting rid of the pepper plants is the best option? I really like how pretty one of them is, but I don't even like it's peppers. I would really like to ensure no spider mites for the new peppers even if it means getting rid of the old ones. What do I need to do to get rid of spider mites in my apartment? Is dusting and vacuuming enough if I get rid of the pepper plants? What can I do to avoid a spider mite infestation in the future? Last summer was my first attempt to grow anything from seed, so this is all a big learning experience for me. Thanks!

    Bookmark   February 18, 2009 at 11:44AM
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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

If I were you, I'd get rid of the pepper plants. Vacuuming will be helpful, but not dusting! Wipe down the areas where you've had the peppers with soapy water.

As for your new seedlings, inspect the underside of the leaves and along the stems on a daily basis. It might be helpful to pick up an inexpensive magnifying glass to help you with your 'scouting'. If you catch them early enough, you can keep mites at bay with sprays of plain water.

    Bookmark   February 18, 2009 at 2:04PM
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