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List of garden pests : Whitefly

Whitefly is a tiny fly – about the size of a grain of sugar – that is often confused with the skins shed by greenflies when they moult. But the two are easy to tell apart – the whitefly has white wings and it flits about of the plant when the foliage is touched.

Though small, whitefly is a serious pest of greenhouse plants and houseplants, especially tomatoes and fuchsias. The flies weaken the plants by sap sucking and excrete sticky honeydew on which black moulds grow, rendering the plants very unsightly.

Avoid buying plants that are infested. Effective control can be achieved using a parasitic wasp that lays its eggs in the whitefly eggs – available from suppliers of biological control products.

Alternatively, spray three times, at weekly intervals, with a general garden insecticide, until control is achieved.

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