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Neem Oil Is Not Killing Spider Mites

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When the leaves on your plant look like they are covered with thousands of tiny spots, chances are you have a spider mite infestation. If you’re an eco-conscious home gardener, you’ll probably reach for a plant-based pesticide such as neem oil to minimize the effects of chemicals on the environment. If the neem oil is not effective, you might be using it incorrectly.

No Ordinary Pest

Spider mites are not insects, although they are sometimes categorized as insect pests. Rather — as their name implies — they are related to spiders and classified as arachnids. Tiny ones, however: They are less than 1/20th of an inch in length and look like moving black dots to the naked eye, according to the University of California Statewide Integrated Pest Management Program. Although you don’t want to spray spider killer on your plants, the fact that they are arachnids means that they react to some pesticides in ways different from other common insect pests — such as aphids and scale — might react.

Resistant to Pesticides

Spider mites can be difficult to eradicate with pesticides, especially if populations are large. They have many natural enemies that usually keep their populations down in the garden, but indoors those predators are not around to gobble them up. In addition, pesticide use in the garden can kill those beneficial predators, leaving the spider mites to thrive and proliferate. Pesticides containing carbaryl actually increase spider mite reproduction, according to the University of California Statewide Integrated Pest Management Program. Neem oil, on the other hand, can be effective against spider mites, but only if it is used properly.

Neem Oil Effectiveness

The most effective way to use neem oil to eradicate spider mites is to apply it once and then release natural predators into the area, but this isn’t always practical or feasible — especially if the mites are infesting indoor plants. Otherwise, stick with the neem oil — making sure you are applying it correctly — and combine that with other control methods, keeping in mind that many plants can tolerate a small population of spider mites. If you see a few of them hanging around your woody plant, don’t worry too much about it.

Applying Neem Oil

To apply a premixed neem oil correctly, thoroughly wet the plant, agitating the sprayer constantly and paying particular attention to the undersides of the leaves. Reapply the neem oil once a week at the minimum. Because spider mites are arthropods — they have external skeletons — you might have to apply it even more often than that. So in short, if the neem oil is not killing your spider mites, it might be because you aren’t applying it often enough or maybe you are applying it at the wrong time. Never apply neem oil when temperatures are above 90 degrees Fahrenheit or when the plants are water stressed, meaning they need water or are going through a period of drought.

Other Control Methods

Spider mites like dusty leaves, so if you have houseplants, keep the leaves clean. Spraying the undersides of the leaves with water once a day can discourage spider mites from clustering there. Keep plants well watered if they prefer moist soil, as water-stressed plants are more prone to suffer from spider mite infestations. If you start to see a few mites on your plant, blast them off with a strong stream of water.

Neem Oil Is Not Killing Spider Mites. When the leaves on your plant look like they are covered with thousands of tiny spots, chances are you have a spider mite infestation. If you’re an eco-conscious home gardener, you’ll probably reach for a plant-based pesticide such as neem oil to minimize the effects of …

Neem oil application for spider mites

Stoney Jake
Well-Known Member

So I found a 3 of the little rust colored devils on 2 out of the 5 of the plants in my veg room. I have read up on the subject and went out after work yesterday and bought some neem oil. I read and was told by my local hydrostore that its very important to apply this when the lights are off. Or 5 minutes before the lights turn off.
My veg room has flouros and cfls in it, will it hurt anything to apply this with the lights on.
I know its a whole different story under my HPS.
Another thing is that I have my veg room on a 24 light cycle. If I do need to change the light cycle I will, but I was wondering if it would mess with anything if I just turned the lights out at 9pm-1am(for the neem oil) for a couple of weeks then back to 24 hrs?

First time even seeing a mite so my heart sank when I saw it having read all the horror stories on here. After doing some research I feel good about being able to get rid of these suckers.

Any help would be much appreciated

Defcon9
Well-Known Member
hydgrow
Well-Known Member

So I found a 3 of the little rust colored devils on 2 out of the 5 of the plants in my veg room. I have read up on the subject and went out after work yesterday and bought some neem oil. I read and was told by my local hydrostore that its very important to apply this when the lights are off. Or 5 minutes before the lights turn off.
My veg room has flouros and cfls in it, will it hurt anything to apply this with the lights on.
I know its a whole different story under my HPS.
Another thing is that I have my veg room on a 24 light cycle. If I do need to change the light cycle I will, but I was wondering if it would mess with anything if I just turned the lights out at 9pm-1am(for the neem oil) for a couple of weeks then back to 24 hrs?

First time even seeing a mite so my heart sank when I saw it having read all the horror stories on here. After doing some research I feel good about being able to get rid of these suckers.

Any help would be much appreciated

darkarms
Well-Known Member
sempre verde
Active Member
simpsonsampson420
Well-Known Member

so here are a couple things about neem oil. i use it and swear by it so ill give you my personal experiences with it.

first i’ve used neem oil under HO satellite IV floros on a 24/0 crop with NO problems.. i didnt have any burn from the water or the oil magnifying light. no ill side affects at all.. so if you are using floros i would venture to say you’ll be fine spraying during a 24/0 light schedule. just move the lights when you spray so you dont spray the lights themselves. make sure you get under the leaves and the “inside” of the plant just as well as the topside of the leafs and “outside” of the plant. like was said those little bastards live under the leaves so take time to spray well.

secondly neem oil can be root fed to your plants as well.. during the entire time i have an infestation i feed neem to my plants. ill explain what neem oil does and why root feeding is good in the next paragraph.. but i feed each plant about 6 ml per gallon of water every other feed.. you can just incorporate the neem into your regular feeding schedule. only do this if its soil though. i wouldnt recommend it for hydro.

here is how neem oil works.. neem oil is NOT a spot killer.. you wont spray your plants today and be gone of mite tomorrow. expect about a 2 week battle. neem oil works a couple ways.. first if you can spray the eggs well it covers them and suffocates them. no more eggs.. when the adults eat the neem oil it messes with their hormones. it makes it so they cant reproduce and lay eggs.. immature pests that eat the neem oil dont reach adult hood and are never able to reproduce. thats why spraying the plant well is so important.. you want to make sure the mites have no choice BUT to eat the neem oil. root feeding work very similar in that the pests hormones get fucked up when they suck the juices from your plant, but it also deters them from sucking on your plant because the neem oil tastes horrible. it also contains some trace minerals so its actually good to feed your plants,, i personally will root feed my plants every other time during and infestation, and spray them every 2-3 days.. the spray i use is 3ml neem oil per 1L of water with a few drops of biodegradable liquid dish soap. usually following this over a 2 week period.. then just go down to spraying once a week as a precaution. ill do this up to the 4th weeks of flowering.. havent ran into mold problems yet, or had neem flavored buds, or any other side affects due to the neem oil. its always worked for me.. like i said.. it just takes about a week before you see progress, 2 weeks before the infestation is gone. but its a natural way to get rid of them. if you want an immediate solution get some NO PEST STRIPS from walmart, lowes, home depot, ect.. they will work in a few hours and kill both mites and eggs. but it is a chemical strip (not a spray). personally i dont want to think that what im inhaling was treated with a chemical. NO PEST strips work tho.. just make sure you arent in the area because they arent anything you want to breath in. also AVID and FLORAMITE are instant working sprays, but again they are chemical. chemical = instant, but it is a chemical you are using on your plant. natural = longer time fighting the pests, but its not chemical.. just depends on you.

also.. a couple smaller ways of helping slow down their life cycle and battle them is;
1) keep humidity up. they hate humidity. spraying with cold water will help by raising the humidity, spraying them off the leaf surface, and they dont like cold.. which brings me to number two..
2) drop the temps to between 65 and 70 if you can. it can take 10 days for mites to reach maturity in cooler humid temps, but as little at 2 days in warmer less humid places. each female can lay 100 eggs a day. they are 75% females anyways. in the right climate they can very very very quickly run your garden over. so until you decide how you are gonna deal with them and they are dealt with making the enviroment as unhospitible to them as you can will help slow their growth.
3) also you can use a tobacco, tobasco, garlic, cinnamon oil, peppermint oil, ect spray.. they arent pesticides, but will help deter them from your plants.

whatever way you chose is up to you. some say neem oil doesnt work and you should go with avid, floramite, or no pest strips. i swear by neem oil and wont use anything else. just make sure you get 100% neem oil from the first press. and not 100% neem oil from the second press or something that just has neem oil in it.

good luck with those bastards.. hope this helped

Chris Webber
Active Member

so here are a couple things about neem oil. i use it and swear by it so ill give you my personal experiences with it.

first i’ve used neem oil under HO satellite IV floros on a 24/0 crop with NO problems.. i didnt have any burn from the water or the oil magnifying light. no ill side affects at all.. so if you are using floros i would venture to say you’ll be fine spraying during a 24/0 light schedule. just move the lights when you spray so you dont spray the lights themselves. make sure you get under the leaves and the “inside” of the plant just as well as the topside of the leafs and “outside” of the plant. like was said those little bastards live under the leaves so take time to spray well.

secondly neem oil can be root fed to your plants as well.. during the entire time i have an infestation i feed neem to my plants. ill explain what neem oil does and why root feeding is good in the next paragraph.. but i feed each plant about 6 ml per gallon of water every other feed.. you can just incorporate the neem into your regular feeding schedule. only do this if its soil though. i wouldnt recommend it for hydro.

here is how neem oil works.. neem oil is NOT a spot killer.. you wont spray your plants today and be gone of mite tomorrow. expect about a 2 week battle. neem oil works a couple ways.. first if you can spray the eggs well it covers them and suffocates them. no more eggs.. when the adults eat the neem oil it messes with their hormones. it makes it so they cant reproduce and lay eggs.. immature pests that eat the neem oil dont reach adult hood and are never able to reproduce. thats why spraying the plant well is so important.. you want to make sure the mites have no choice BUT to eat the neem oil. root feeding work very similar in that the pests hormones get fucked up when they suck the juices from your plant, but it also deters them from sucking on your plant because the neem oil tastes horrible. it also contains some trace minerals so its actually good to feed your plants,, i personally will root feed my plants every other time during and infestation, and spray them every 2-3 days.. the spray i use is 3ml neem oil per 1L of water with a few drops of biodegradable liquid dish soap. usually following this over a 2 week period.. then just go down to spraying once a week as a precaution. ill do this up to the 4th weeks of flowering.. havent ran into mold problems yet, or had neem flavored buds, or any other side affects due to the neem oil. its always worked for me.. like i said.. it just takes about a week before you see progress, 2 weeks before the infestation is gone. but its a natural way to get rid of them. if you want an immediate solution get some NO PEST STRIPS from walmart, lowes, home depot, ect.. they will work in a few hours and kill both mites and eggs. but it is a chemical strip (not a spray). personally i dont want to think that what im inhaling was treated with a chemical. NO PEST strips work tho.. just make sure you arent in the area because they arent anything you want to breath in. also AVID and FLORAMITE are instant working sprays, but again they are chemical. chemical = instant, but it is a chemical you are using on your plant. natural = longer time fighting the pests, but its not chemical.. just depends on you.

also.. a couple smaller ways of helping slow down their life cycle and battle them is;
1) keep humidity up. they hate humidity. spraying with cold water will help by raising the humidity, spraying them off the leaf surface, and they dont like cold.. which brings me to number two..
2) drop the temps to between 65 and 70 if you can. it can take 10 days for mites to reach maturity in cooler humid temps, but as little at 2 days in warmer less humid places. each female can lay 100 eggs a day. they are 75% females anyways. in the right climate they can very very very quickly run your garden over. so until you decide how you are gonna deal with them and they are dealt with making the enviroment as unhospitible to them as you can will help slow their growth.
3) also you can use a tobacco, tobasco, garlic, cinnamon oil, peppermint oil, ect spray.. they arent pesticides, but will help deter them from your plants.

whatever way you chose is up to you. some say neem oil doesnt work and you should go with avid, floramite, or no pest strips. i swear by neem oil and wont use anything else. just make sure you get 100% neem oil from the first press. and not 100% neem oil from the second press or something that just has neem oil in it.

good luck with those bastards.. hope this helped

So I found a 3 of the little rust colored devils on 2 out of the 5 of the plants in my veg room. I have read up on the subject and went out after work…