Is your fig plant showing any dark red spots or weblike structures? If yes, then probably you are looking at spider mites!
Your fiddle leaf fig can suffer from spider mite infestations. So, if you suspect your fiddle leaf fig is infested with these tiny mites, inspect it closely. Check the undersides of leaves for webs or tiny insects. Also, don’t forget to inspect between stems as well.
Getting mites can be caused by a variety of factors. However, the primary reason for getting them is from another plant.
Once you have identified spider mites on fiddle leaf fig, you need to remove them as soon as possible. Because a small infestation of spider mites can make a big issue for your plant.
So, let’s kill the spider mites on the fiddle leaf fig. In this article, I’m going to tell you what causes mites and how to treat them. Also, make sure you read this article till the end so you know how to prevent spider mites. As prevention is the best way to avoid spider mites.
So without further ado, let’s begin!
Signs of spider mites on fiddle leaf fig!
By looking at the leaves carefully, you can determine whether they have been infested with spider mites. The presence of small brown or dark red dots on the leaves of fiddle leaf figs is a key indication of spider mites.
Let me discuss in detail below what spider mites look like on fiddle leaf figs!
1. Dark spots on fiddle leaf figs
These tiny mites eat chlorophyll, suck sap, and reproduce quickly. Also, due to their small size, it’s hard to identify them in small numbers.
Yet, as an infestation grows, spider mites will lay numerous eggs, which appear as white clusters (dots/spots) on leaves and within vein dips.
2. Curled fig leaves
Your fiddle leaf fig plant will often display curling leaves or yellowing leaves, and the leaf falls if there are mites on them.
3. Spots on fig leaves that are reddish brown
To see if your plant has spider mites run a white paper towel across the leaf surface. However, seeing spider mites move around can be challenging as they are typically smaller than 1mm in size.
4. Spider mite webs on fig plant
Spider mite webs are another indication of spider mite infestation. To keep their eggs within the plant, bugs attach minute filaments to them.
Upon closer inspection, silvery patterns will be visible on the leaves, particularly where stem and stalk meet, near dips, along leaf edges, and veins.
Alternatively, you can use a hand lens or a magnifying glass to examine your leaves for spider mite infestations. You will see tiny white, red, black, or tan-colored spiders spread out over the sensitive areas of your plants.
Causes of spider mites on fiddle leaf fig!
These unwanted guests usually come from other plants. So, if you have brought any new plants to your home, Quarantine them immediately! This isolation will prevent the spider mites from spreading and affecting your fiddle leaf fig. Also, you can carry these mites to your home or garden. Because they are super tiny and can attach to your pet. Worse, they spread very easily.
However, you won’t see spider mites on fiddle leaf figs during winter or cool weather. They would be resting in the soil waiting for the weather to get warm again.
Spider mites thrive in hot and dry weather. Additionally, they dislike humid conditions. But in favorable conditions female spider mites can lay around 20 eggs per day. You can notice these eggs on the undersides of your fiddle leaf fig leaves. Moreover, in hot weather, it only takes 5 days for an egg to become a full adult.
Talking about the life span of spider mites, they go from 2-4 weeks. However, this depends on weather conditions. Moreover, they reproduce fast as they can reproduce sexually or asexually. So, you can see how rapidly they can harm your plant. Hence, it is important to take immediate action. In the next section, we will see how to kill spider mites on fiddle leaf fig.
How to treat spider mites on fiddle leaf fig?
Spider mite treatments are available in a wide range. The majority of pest control methods involve spraying insecticides on plants to eradicate and prevent the insects from spreading.
I have given some best ways to get rid of spider mites on fiddle leaf figs. Make sure to check out the ways given below!
1. Give your plant a good spray of cold water
Spray your plants with water regularly to eliminate insects. To eliminate pests, inspect the undersides of leaves, stalks, and their bases thoroughly.
It’s hard for spider mites to survive in cold water. For this reason, spray your houseplant continuously with a water hose and pay attention to the sensitive areas where the infestation is worst. Put the plant in a colder part of the house with the water still dripping. Usually, the mites detach themselves and move away from the wet zones of your plant slowly.
Moreover, dust, spider mite eggs, and other contaminants can be removed by spraying water.
2. Use neem oil on fiddle leaf figs
The easiest way to eradicate spider mites from fiddle leaf figs is to use insecticide spray. Use chemical insecticides or neem oil, an organic solvent.
It only takes oil, water, and an emulsifying agent (such as mild liquid soap). Add 1 tablespoon neem oil and 1-3ml liquid soap emulsifier to a quart of water. Be sure to shake the soap solution before adding the neem oil concentrate.
First, test the solution’s potency before spraying. To begin, douse a few leaves and wait 10-15 hours before you move on. For an effective solution, thoroughly coat the affected surface with the solution.
3. Treat the fig plant again with insecticide
The reproduction rate of spider mites is fast. So, at least once a week, follow-up treatment sessions are crucial. After four days, you can assess the plant’s condition.
Mist the affected surfaces again if you suspect some spider mites on your plant. It is also easy for pests to migrate from plant to plant.
An infestation of spider mites can be handled in several ways. Rub the leaf surfaces with alcohol and introduce natural predators (like ladybugs) to control spider mite populations.
You can also use essential oils (such as spearmint and rosemary) to keep pests off your plants or use chemicals (such as dichotomous earth), which can be particularly effective at removing spider mites from fiddle leaf figs while they are still in the ground.
4. Use horticultural oil on the fiddle leaf fig plant
Horticultural oil can also be used to control spider mites. These insecticides are commercially produced from highly refined petroleum products. Specifically, they repel spider mites, aphids, mealybugs, and scale.
By suffocating spider mites, horticultural oil controls spider mites on plants. Consider neem oil or insecticidal soap as safer alternatives to pesticides.
How to prevent mites on fiddle leaf fig plant?
During your fiddle leaf fig parent journey, you are sure to encounter spider mite problems. However, if you take the following preventive measures, these tiny mites will not be able to attack your plants. Let’s check out the preventive measures below!
1. Don’t buy a plant without inspecting it first
One of the common beginner mistakes is to add the fig plant without inspecting it. However, it is very crucial to check your plant thoroughly. The local nurses usually take care to prevent pests and diseases. Yet, this is where most of the mite’s problems start.
Thus, before you purchase the plant look closely underside the leaves, and between stems for any signs of infestation. If you spot any sign such as a tiny insect, or webbing then it can be left by spider mites. Avoid bringing such fig plants because not only you will need to deal with mites infestation, but you will risk spreading it to any other precious plants in your home.
2. Monitor neighboring plants for infestations
Maybe the danger isn’t in the nursery but your home. It won’t take long for spider mites to spread to your new fig plant if nearby houseplants have them.
Therefore, before adding your new plant, check nearby plants for signs of infestation. In case you spot anything troubling, isolate the plant and don’t place it until all spider mites are gone.
Additionally, to prevent reinfestation, clean furniture crevices thoroughly to prevent them from hiding.
3. Ensure that the soil is clean
Pests like spider mites and other houseplant pests target vulnerable areas and spread from there to healthy parts. The damaged foliage left on the topsoil of these fussy plants makes an ideal hideout for spider mites.
Hence, clean up the debris around the soil’s base regularly. Also, don’t let fallen leaves break down in the pot. Once you find them, remove them immediately. Lastly, when the soil begins to break down, remove any other plant debris and refresh the soil.
4. Provide high humidity to fig plants
In tropical rainforests, humidity often exceeds 75% for fiddle leaf figs. So, make sure your plant has high humidity, preferably around 60% to prevent pests from invading.
You can raise the humidity by doing a few things. For instance, grouping several plants. For best results, place your Fiddle Leaf in a pebble tray filled with water or install a humidifier.
5. Keep the fiddle leaf fig plant well-watered
Airborne spider mites and soilborne spider mites hate water. By keeping the Fiddle Leaf well-watered, you make it hard for them to settle and also increase humidity around the plant.
Also, make sure you water your plant again before the soil dries out completely. As soon as the top layer of soil dries out, water again.
6. Clean up the fig plant leaves
As a result of its large leaves, this plant attracts dust quickly, turning its glossy green leaves gray. This causes several problems, including spider mites.
Those dusty leaves are the perfect habitat for these pests, which multiply and spread throughout your home. In addition, dusty leaves slow photosynthesis.
Make sure to wipe the leaves down around once a month to avoid these problems. Also, weekly cleaning is recommended if your house accumulates dust quickly.
7. Take care of your fiddle leaf fig plants
Giving your Fiddle Leaf the best care is the best prevention. Healthy houseplants are more resilient to pest problems than vulnerable ones.
So, care for them as best you can, replicating their native habitat. If spider mites do get in, this will make removal much easier.
Few questions on spider mites on fiddle leaf fig!
Q1. How do I kill spider mites instantly?
Ans. Rubbing alcohol is the best solution to get rid of mites quickly. By dehydrating spider mites, rubbing alcohol kills them. Mix 1 cup of rubbing alcohol with 4 cups of water, this solution can kill spider mites on your plants. Also, make sure the stems, flowers, and foliage are thoroughly covered.
Q2. Do fiddle leaf figs get spider mites?
Ans. Unfortunately yes, fiddle leaf figs are susceptible to spider mite infestations. Also, a small outbreak of spider mites can quickly grow into a big problem due to their fast reproduction rate and easy spread!
Q3. Can I wipe off spider mites from the fig plant?
Ans. Yes, once you have identified the spider mites, clean the plant gently. Wipe down each leaf with a sponge and warm soapy water. For several weeks, repeat this process. Additionally, if there are any damaged parts, remove them.
Q4. How do I know when spider mites are gone?
Ans. You can check if you have spider mites by shaking some leaves over plain white paper to see whether they move, or by looking closely at the webbing.
Spider mites are the last thing any fig parent wants on their plant. However, spider mite infestation is a common problem in fiddle leaf figs. It is usually local nurseries or neighbors that infest your plants with mites.
But there is good news: spider mites can be removed from fiddle leaf figs. Insecticides, horticultural oil, and water spray can be used to treat these tiny creatures. Moreover, neem oil is considered the best treatment for spider mites. To remove mites instantly, rubbing alcohol provides the best solution.
Nevertheless, prevention is the most effective method of keeping these mites at bay. Therefore, before buying the plant or adding it to your collection, inspect it carefully. Make sure your figs are well watered and provided with high humidity. If you take proper care of your fig plant, spider mites won’t be an issue.
Let me know if you need assistance with spider mites on fiddle leaf figs by leaving a comment below. I would be glad to assist you. I hope you’ve enjoyed reading this article. If you have any more questions or want to know something specific about your houseplant, reach out to us at Planslane. We’d be more than happy to help make your plant journey as easy as possible!
Happy Gardening to you!
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