Learn to Create Your Own Succulent Wreath.

Those Pesky Mealy Bugs

Mealy bugs are bugs that look like cotton specks that like to live in the tight spaces on your succulents.  Once you see them, you need to deal with them asap and if you have a few,  the good news is they are easy to treat.  This sheet has a recipe for deterring mealy bugs. Mealie Bugs.pdf  An easier remedt is 70% Isopropyl Alcohol sprayed directly onto the leaves of your succulents.  Be sure that they’re not in direct sun at the time.   Since Alcohol dries very quickly, that shouldn’t be too much of a problem.  Some of the thinner-skinned succulents, especially Aeoniums, can be harmed by spraying them while the sun is out.  Most handle it well, though, even in the sun.  Use with caution until you get the hang of it at first.Mealie Bugs.pdf I usually have at least a couple of spray bottles filled with it and love how it cleans my succulents so well.

Here is some information from succulents.co.za below:

Mealy bugs are soft-bodied, wingless insects up to 4mm in length, they are white to pink in colour.  Adult mealy bugs are covered in white waxy threads and a waxy coating which makes them so difficult to eradicate.   They can be found on leaves (esp. the axil), stems and roots (root mealy bug).

Mealy bugs have sucking mouthparts that they use to extract large amount of sap from the host plant.  These insects extract a large amount of sap in order to obtain enough proteins, the excess sap is excreted as honeydew.  The excreted honeydew attracts ants and sooty mould which inhibits the plants ability to manufacture food.


Signs Of Mealybug Infestation:

Image result for mealybugs on succulent

Non-infected plants can be infected from infected plats as mealy bugs can crawl from plant to plant.  Humans and animals may infect non-infected plants as they may be carried from one plant to the other.

Examine the foliage for individual bugs by looking at the upper and lower areas of the leaves, the axis (where the leaves join the stem), look between leaves especially tightly packed leaves and rosettes.  Severe infestations resemble patches of cotton all over the plant.  Look for honeydew and sooty mould. Another sign is the presence of ants, ants are attracted to the honeydew that is excreted by the mealy bugs.

Damage Done by Mealybug:

Plants will seldom die of these pests due to heavy infestations being unsightly (you just can’t miss it).  Mealy bugs excrete a honeydew that attracts ants and possibly black sooty mould.  The ants and the sooty mould do not do much damage but rather makes the plant look unsightly. Mealy Bugs will kill off leaves and if left unchecked they will kill the plant. Mealy bugs also effect the development of flowers and stems (especially in succulents with fleshy stems).

Treatment of Mealybug:

Environmentally friendly alternatives to poison:

Biological control – Introduce Hypoaspis and/or Cryptolaemus (Australian Ladybird)  to the infected plants.  Hypoaspis is a small mite that feeds on small insects, especially mealy bug.

Manual removal – You can pick the bugs off manually in plants that are not severely infested or use a strong jet of water (be careful not to damage plants).

Manual Removal – Use a 50/50 mix of water and methylated spirits to wipe away the bugs, the spirits should kill any remaining pests.

Chemical Poisons:

  • Tokuthion – 5ml/10l water
  • Chlorpirifos – 100ml/10l
  • Confidor – 10ml/10l
  • Malathion – 25ml/10l

How to Prune Succulents by Laura Eubanks

Until I do my own video, take a look at Laura Eubanks’s tutorial on how to trim up your succulents.  I’ve learned so much about succulents by watching her videos.   Well, Laura and Debra Lee Baldwin.  Enjoy!  Also, make sure that your succulents are not dormant when you prune them!  Laura Eubanks shows how to prune your succulents

38 Ideas for Succulents in Containers

This article has so much good information on succulents in containers that I just had to share. If you don’t want to get your hands dirty, call me. As a designer with wholesale connections, I can usually you get you a better price than if you did it yourself. https://www.sunset.com/garden/garden-basics/succulent-plants


Kalanchoe Lucias: to cut or not?

I’m the past, when faced with this question, I pored over my gardening and succulent books, and scoured the internet in search of the answer to this question. I also consulted another succulent expert and arrived at the wrong answer to this question! Here, Debra Lee Baldwin gives us the definitive answer with proof!

Debra Lee Baldwin’s info on Kalanchoe Lucia. They’re not monocarpic after all!