How To Get Rid Of Whiteflies

You have problems with whiteflies in your garden or on your balcony and want to know how to get rid of those annoying little insects?

Stick with me since I will show you how to get rid of whiteflies in a simple but yet effective manner.

Whitefly Overview

Short descriptionWhiteflies are small leaf-sucking insects that feed on the underside of plants. They are indeed white and an infestation with whiteflies is therefore easy to spot.
Scientific nameAleyrodidae.
Lifespan1 to 2 months.
What plants do they like?Eggplants, tomatoes, peppers, potatoes, cabbage and many more.
SymptomsYou will see whiteflies with your naked eyes and they will also produce some sort of honeydew.
DistributionWorldwide.
Potential damageA big population of whiteflies can greatly slow down the growth of your plants and also your yields tend to be lower since those insects suck nutrients from your plants and make them weaker.
Control optionsChemical, biological and cultural.
Treatment difficultyIntermediate.
Natural predatorsLadybugs and lacewings.

How to get rid of Whiteflies

1. Separate whitefly-infested from healthy plants

First of all, you should make sure to separate infested from healthy plants so that whiteflies don’t spread even more in your garden or on your balcony.

If you grow your plants in pots, just separate plants that are infested by whiteflies from your other healthy plants by moving those pots.

If you grow your plants in big growing beds or straight in your garden, you may have to transplant your infested plants back into pots before treating them.

2. Brush them with cold water

After you have isolated infested plants, you can now take measures to actually get rid of them.

One simple but yet effective measure to deter whiteflies is just to brush your plants with cold water.

Prepare the soil!

You can just put your pots into your shower or also shower them with a hose in your garden.

After showering your plants for a few minutes, a high percentage of whiteflies should be gone.

You can wait a few days and repeat this process until barely any whiteflies will be left.

However, please note that this technique should only be used for mature plants and not for small seedlings since small seedlings will be quite vulnerable to showers and may decay.

3. Use flour to get rid of whiteflies

You can also just use some conventional flour and strew it over your contaminated plants.

By doing so, you can remove moisture from whiteflies and they will often just dry up. While this might not be the most ethical way to go, it still yields pretty decent results.

4. Neem oil can help to deter whiteflies

Another natural and effective measure to keep away whiteflies from your plants is to spray a neem oil solution onto the leaves of your plants.

Neem oil is great since it deters whiteflies and other pests while it will not do any damage to our environment at all.

5. Stinging nettle liquid

If you don’t have neem oil at home, you can also just make your own natural pesticide by putting some stinging nettles into a bucket of cold water and leave them there for a few days.

After a few days, just remove the plant material and you will have a perfectly natural solution that not only deters whiteflies and other pests, but is also good to use as a natural fertilizer.

6. Insecticidal soap

You could also just use insecticidal soap and apply it to infested parts of your plants.

However, compared to stinging nettle liquid and need oil, this soap is less eco-friendly and you should therefore try those other measures before you use soap to get rid of whiteflies.

7. Remove parts of your plants

If the infestation with whiteflies is pretty concentrated and only a few leaves are heavily infested while the rest of your plant is not, you can also just remove those heavily infested parts and get rid of the problem.

8. Use natural predators to reduce the population of whiteflies

Since ladybugs and lacewings are natural predators of whiteflies, you could also buy some ladybug larvae on the internet or from your local garden center and use those little helpers in your garden.

However, please note that positive effects are often just temporary and that you will likely not achieve the desired results in the long run through this measure.

9. Chemical pesticides as last hope

If you have tried several methods mentioned before and haven’t seen the desired results, you may also want to try chemical pesticides to get rid of whiteflies.

However, please note that you only apply those chemical alternatives carefully to protect our environment as best as possible.

10. Take good care of your plants

You should also just take good care of your plants and make sure that you remove weeds as a preventive measure against whiteflies.

By doing so, you can make sure that your plants have good growing conditions and that they will become less vulnerable against whiteflies and other pests in general.

11. Water your plants on a regular basis

It is also crucial to water your plants on a regular basis so that your plants can grow in a decent manner and will be able to defend against whiteflies and other pests in a natural manner.

12. Choose the right location for your plants

You can also prevent whitefly infestation by choosing the right spot for your plants. If the plants you grow love the sun, make sure to choose a sunny spot in your garden or on your balcony.

If they rather grow best in half-shady environments, make sure to grow them there.

In general, always make sure that you choose the perfect location for your plants so that they become more resistant to pests like whiteflies.

13. Fertilize your plants

You should also fertilize your plants whenever they need it.

Only then will your plants be able to become strong enough to deter whiteflies on their own without your intervention.

14. Provide enough space for your plants

Also make sure that you provide enough space for your plants.

By doing so, you can slow down the spread of pests in your garden and you can also make sure that your plants don’t have to compete for nutrients and sunlight with each other.

What’s left to say?

As you can see, there are many simple but yet effective ways to get rid of whiteflies.

If you liked this article and want to learn more about gardening in general, also make sure to check out my grower’s guides as well as my companion plant section.

About the Author

My name is Andreas and I’m really passionate about our environment and also about growing plants. In fact, I have grown several different plants over many years. I love to see my plants grow and also always try new things to improve my overall conditions at home.

In my blog posts, I want to share my experiences with you so that you can become successful in growing various different plants and improving your home as well, even though you might still be a beginner right now.

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