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Old 05-04-2013, 05:21 AM
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Help! I just found mealy bugs.

Hi everyone I haven't posted in a long time. hope everyone is doing well. I got a new phalaenopsis about 3 weeks ago from a grower I've gotten quite a few plants from over the years. Its been in my house for those past three weeks and today I just discovered mealy bugs on it. I don't know why I haven't noticed them before I guess I just didn't inspect the plant closely enough or the population has just become large enough for me to notice them. I noticed some on the flowers stem and inside the flowers but I haven't seen them on the leaves or root yet. so any advice on what I should do? Thanks for any help I've never has to deal with pests like this before so its new to me.

1) Should I cut the inflorescence off and discard it since there are bugs inside the flowers?
2) I was reading through some other threads and I saw a mention of Bayer Advanced Rose and Flower insect killer. Would this be a good thing to use on the entire plant to treat the bugs? Should I spray the entire plant roots and all after unpotting it?
3) I suppose after the initial treatment I can repot it with new media and then retreat it a week later? will all this potting and unpotting hurt the plant? I don't want the mealies to hide in the root system from me because it seems like id never get rid of them then.

Thanks for any advice you can give me! This is kinda freaking me out. I really don't want it to get out of control or spread to my other plants. The infested plant is in a different part of the house than my other orchids.
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Old 05-04-2013, 10:59 AM
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If it's not a big infestation you can take a q-tip with alcohol and take out the mealies. If it's a bigger infestation, move the plant away from others so as not to get mealies on those. I've used Bayers 3 in 1 with good results and I've used physan. Treat and repeat in a week or so. I have to say since potting almost all my plants in lava rock, mealies have not been an issue. I don't know if it's a coincidence or not, but no mealies at all this winter.
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Old 05-04-2013, 11:03 AM
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I have several doritis in bedroom window, no compost, just sitting in water rays and have found it frustratingly difficult to eradicate rhese pests even in this simple setup with few places for them to hide.

I dont know which is the best bug spray to use but any mealies that are visible on the leaves you can spray with isopropanol (isopropyl alcohol), this will kill any it touches but try to keep it off the roots. (dont use methylated spirits).

If they are hiding in the flowers and cant be removed i would cut the flowers off as well. They are really hard to get rid of, been trying for several months.
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Old 05-04-2013, 01:37 PM
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Thanks so much for the responses. I think I am going to have to cut the flowers off as there are so many hiding places for them inside the flowers and that's where I've seen them hiding. I hope the plant is far enough away from my other orchids so I don't contaminate them. Most of my collection is in a seperate closed off room and I have one other dendrobium on display in the room next to where the one with mealy bugs is. I'm going to try to get some bayers or physan this weekend. Hopefully at Lowe's. And ill keep a watch on all my plants like an eagle lol.
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Old 05-06-2013, 02:30 PM
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I have used the Bayer product on a Paph with mealies, with very good results. I discarded the media, washed the plant as well as I could, sprayed the whole plant including roots, also sprayed some on the new potting medium, JIC.

I re-treated at roughly one week intervals (just the leaves & surface of the medium), for maybe a month? Plant is still doing fine months later, no bugs.

Good luck!
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Old 05-06-2013, 07:56 PM
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Echoing what Catt Mandu stated, it is crucial to re-treat so that the infant mealies don's get re-started. Keep a record and continue for at least a month. Mealies are persistent buggers!
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Old 05-06-2013, 09:32 PM
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Neem/horticultural oil is also recommended on many sites and I plan to try that next winter. I just treated many of my plants with the rose systemic (non-edibles) and others (citrus) with isopropyl alcohol. The scale and mealies seem pretty well gone. Good luck!
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Old 05-07-2013, 06:57 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by awhoward View Post
I'm going to try to get some bayers or physan this weekend. Hopefully at Lowe's. And ill keep a watch on all my plants like an eagle lol.

Stick w/the Bayer product(s)...physan is not an insecticide and will do nothing for the mealybugs. The Bayer products can be found just about anywhere this time of the year...Lowe's and Home Depot being sure places to find them.

Good luck w/the eradication...I don't mess around w/the anything but the big guns when I find more than a few mealies these days. They can reproduce and spread quickly if not caught very early. Just be sure to carry them outside to do the spraying and leave them outside until they are dry.

BTW -- I would pop the worst one out of the pot...spray it...after it's dried then repot into fresh media and pot. Most likely there are mealies in the mix. The neighbor plants I would just spray and watch. Then retreat everything according to the manufacturer directions.
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