New Mealybugs Pest Note!

Mar 11, 2016

Have you ever had an infestation of mealybugs on your houseplants or outside on your landscape plants? You may have wondered, “Where did these insects come from?” Mealybugs are often introduced into landscapes and indoors from plant material brought home on other plants, tools, or pots.

What are Mealybugs?

Mealybugs are small, wingless, oval-shaped insects that congregate in large numbers on plants. They form white, cottony masses and are often confused with other pests that produce waxy coatings like cottony cushion scale, woolly aphids, and even soft scales and whiteflies.

What Damage Do Mealybugs Cause?

Mealybugs suck sap from plants, causing them to become weak. High populations of mealybugs can slow plant growth and cause leaf drop. When the pests feed, they excrete sticky honeydew and wax, often times leading to the growth of black sooty mold on top of the honeydew, making plants look unattractive.

Managing Mealybugs

To learn more about mealybugs and their management, read the newly published Pest Notes:Mealybugs by Mary Louise Flint, Extension Entomologist Emerita from UC Davis.