Spider mites of Pittosporum tobira

Disease Information

Spider mites

Symptoms and damage

Tiny (less than 1/50 inch) eight-legged mites are found most commonly on the undersides of leaves. Eggs, cast skins and silken webs are also signs of mites. Mites feed with piercing-sucking mouthparts, causing the upper sides of leaves to exhibit a stippled or bronzed appearance. Common mite pests of pittosporum include both southern red mites and two-spotted spider mites. Two-spotted spider mites have dark spots on both sides of the abdomen. Southern red mites are named for their bright red color.

 COMMENTS on disease

 Southern red mites are most prevalent in cool, moist, conditions, whereas two-spotted spider mites prefer hot, dry weather. Management recommendations

 Use a white piece of paper to monitor for mites. Check for predaceous mites as well, which are larger and move more quickly. Insecticidal soaps, horticultural oils, or approved miticides may be used to control mites when necessary.

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