What is Red Spider Mite?
Red Spider Mite despite their name they can be any colour from red, yellow, green, orange, brown or even black depending on the host plant, although they are normally red and all have 2 dark spots on the rear of the body.
Red Spider Mite are just visible to the naked eye and can be found on the underside of leaves although the yellowing of leaves and webbing are normally spotted 1st.
The females over winter in cracks and crevices in greenhouses or conservatories and emerge to lay eggs in the spring when the temperatures rise and the daylength increases. The eggs hatch to produce larvae and as the temperatures rise the infestation can quickly escalate and get out of control.
All the stages in the Red Spider Mite cycle feed on the underside of leaves. Red Spider Mite feed on plant tissue piercing the cells and sucking out it's contents killing it. This occurs mostly on the underside of the leaves resulting in small yellow / white spots to appear on the upper leaf surface.
As the attack continues the death of more and more cells causes the leaf to turn yellow and die. Eventually the whole plant is killed. As the number of Red Spider Mite increases, webs are produced across the shoot tips. Red Spider Mite can be brought into the greenhouse or conservatory either on plants, on the clothing of people or through vents in warm weather.
Treating Red Spider Mite with Phytoseiulus:
Phytoseiulus is a tiny, harmless mite with a BIG appetite for Red Spider Mite.
Control Red Spider Mite by introducing Phytoseiulus AS SOON as you see Red Spider Mite and the temp is above 16C/61F and below 30c/86f.
Phytoseiulus is a tiny mite, slightly smaller than a Red Spider Mite and it feeds on all stages of the Red Spider Mite eating up to 5 adults or 25 young larvae/eggs per day. Phytoseiulus is supplied in small tubes containing a minimum of 1000 adults. The contents of the tube (inc. the vermiculite they are packed in) is simply sprinkled over the infected plants.
If the infestation of Red Spider Mite is very heavy and there is webbing at the tips of the plants, break up the webs first with your fingers or with a feather duster and spray the plant with SB Invigorator, concentrating on the underside of the leaves.
Help the Phytoseiulus by increasing the humidity (spray the underside of the leaves with soft water) and keep the temperature above 16C (but below 30°C). Also group infected plants together, so the Phytoseiulus can "chase" the Red Spider Mite from plant to plant.
N.B. If you have recently used a chemical spray i.e. within the last 2-3 weeks, please contact us to check how soon Phytoseiulus can be introduced?
Which size do I need?
Only got a few plants or a very mild Red Spider Mite infestation? Use 1 intro. of 1000 Phytoseiulus.
Heavy infestation or you have lots of plants? Use an economy pack of 2000 Phytoseiulus.