White Flies
Other Pests
Slugs & Snails


Whiteflies are not true flies, but bugs. Related to aphids, scale insects and mealybugs, their bodies are a yellowish colour and about 1 mm long. The wings are covered in pure white wax. They are found in large numbers on the underside of the leaves. You can locate adult whiteflies as a white cloud of insects when you disturb the plant. Immature whiteflies are usually found in colonies on or beneath leaf surface. 

Mildly infested plantís leaves will have moltled appearance and leaves of heavily infested plants will be yellow and shriveled. Whiteflies also secrete sticky honeydew that supports the sooty mold fungus that interferes with photosynthesis (food manufacturing process of the plants). Whiteflies appear to be more active during the sunny daylight and do not fly as radically during early morning and late evening. 


Whiteflies are very difficult to control with insecticide, because many species of whiteflies are resistant to pesticides. Insecticidal soap or oil provides partial control of immature whiteflies. These should be sprayed surely on both the upper and under surfaces of the leaves to get good coverage. Repeated applications are necessary. A temporary control is to spray infested plant with a liquid dishwasher soap solution. One popular method is placing a yellow coloured card with a sticky substance near the affected areas. The whiteflies are attracted to the yellow colour and then they stick to the card. One should destroy the heavily infested plant parts before the whiteflies can spread. It is a better practice to replace the susceptible plants with the other plants that are not attacked by the whiteflies.