When taking care of plants, like any grower would know, at some point you will encounter insect pests. It’s part of growing plants. So like any other plants, orchids are also vulnerable to insect pests that give your plants unpleasant spots and could even in the long run, ruin the plant itself, if left untreated. The only good news about pests and orchids is that insects are not considered such a big nuisance compared to other species of plants.
Why is this?
One reason is because they are simply such foreign plants that insects find them to be an alien species. Since there so many hybrids and new species coming out every year, bugs do not have the time to get to know each one. And since they do not know them, they do not bother attacking them.
The second reason is most orchids are grown indoors. Typically indoor plants do not have much problems with insect pests since none to few can actually cause orchids damage.
But when they do attack, what can be done?
Here are a few simple things you need to know and tips you can apply without overdoing it with all the harmful pesticides:
- Common pests that attack orchids are slugs, weevils, mealy bugs, aphids, thrips, scale bugs and spider mites. These insects are easy to get rid of without using too many chemicals.
- You can use isopropyl alcohol or methylated spirits to rub affected parts of your plants.
- You could also spray them with a solution made of water, garlic and hot peppers. Blend equal amount of garlic and pepper then add water depending on desired strength.
- For insects that have hard shells, use a mixture of cooking oil and dishwashing soap mixed with water. Apply directly to the leaves using cotton or a cloth.
- Other effective natural insecticides are neem oil and acid-based cleaners such as vinegar and orange extract.
Although prevention is always better than cure, you do not have to worry when it comes to insects affecting orchids. These easy fix tips will instantly remove your pest problems and give you healthy growing plants in no time.
Have you had a pest problem with your orchid? Please leave a comment below and tell us about it.
For other problems your orchid could encounter, here are 5 Things to Watch For.