Spider Mites Defined
Spider mites are tiny web-spinning bugs that eat sap from the bottom of leaves. They are not insects but rather arachnids, which means they're in the spider family. Spider mites attack trees and garden plants, making the leaves look stippled, yellow, and weak.
Sometimes big problems come in teeny tiny sizes.
Spider mites are hard to see, as they're only about the size of a grain of pepper. Still, for their size, they can really wallop your plants. If the leaves of your plants look yellowed and have tiny webbing between them, you might have spider mites.
Prevention and Maintenance
Make Sure You Have Them
Since spider mites are so small, you have to make sure that they're the culprits for your plant problems. Hold a sheet of white paper under an unhealthy branch. Hit the branch and see what comes out. If tiny red, yellow, green, brown, red, or black specs fall on your paper and begin to crawl around, you have spider mites.
Hose Them Down
Spider Mites like dry, dusty conditions. Spray your plants' leaves or needles with water. Hose down garden walkways and other dry, dusty spots. That will make them unhappy.
Having debris around trees and plants make spider mites feel welcome. If you pick it up, you'll remove some of the conditions they favor.
When you're sure you have spider mites, treat your outdoor plants with Ortho® BugClear™ Insect Killer for Lawns & Landscapes to control them. You can also use Ortho® Fruit Tree Spray.