Woolly Aphids on house plants


How does one get rid of a wooly aphid infestation indoors. Infected are amaryllis, clivia, and citrus plant (6 feet tall).


Dear Writer,

It seems that every gardener, at one time or another, has had to contend with little beasts on our house plants, that mysteriously appeared out of the blue. Woolly aphids are tiny, sucking insects that literally drain the life out of plants. Mostly known as an outdoor garden pest, aphids do hitchhike indoors. But hopefully you have caught this problem in time, and here is what to do: the easiest, and the best, means to deal with aphids is with insecticidal soap, a permitted pesticide, according to the government of Ontario. Your local nursery provider will  have this product, and exactly follow the instructions for spraying. You can treat your Amaryllis, and Clivia (also in the Amaryllidaceae family) and your citrus tree (lime, lemon or orange). You may need to repeat this process, if you see a recurrence.

On that note, we want to be regularly watchful over our house plants for anything unusual. They need more than water and light: trim any dead leaves on a regular basis, and spray and wipe the leaf surfaces, so that leaf transpiration and respiration is robust and healthy. While you’re at it, you’ll also be likely to spot any uninvited creatures, before they become a full-blown infestation.
Thank you for writing, and all the best !

Below are several TMG answers, for your interest, related to your plants:




And, in closing, just because it always bears repeating: the pesticide 2,4-D is a “Class 9 Pesticide” and is banned in Ontario for cosmetic use on lawns, gardens, patios, driveways, parks and schoolyards.  For more information, please refer to Ontario’s Online Gardener’s Handbook: