STICKY RESIDUE ON SWAN PLANT LEAVES

This topic contains 3 replies, has 2 voices, and was last updated by  Jacqui 1 year, 1 month ago.

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  • #46782

    alliep
    Participant

    Hi wonder if anyone can help. I have swan plants growing in a big pot outside and when I had enough eggs I brought it inside to protect it from wasps. I have noticed a sticky clear residue on the bottom older leaves (the new leaves are fine).
    I have a picture of a leaf but unsure how to add a picture.
    If anyone could help, that would be great.
    Thanks
    Allie

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  • #46799

    Jacqui
    Keymaster

    Honeydew weakens the plan and will eventually destroy it. While it”s on its way downhill it is providing poorer quality food for your larvae so this will weaken them.

    It is always better to let caterpillars transfer themselves rather than move them ourselves – the rule is the less handling the better. So this may have contributed to their demise

    BTW feed your plant. An organic mulch and plenty of water will give it a pick-me-up. If you’re near the coast a little kelp is ideal.

    #46795

    alliep
    Participant

    Thanks Jacqui that’s really helpful, I have catepillars on this plant, will they survive or will the honeydew kill them as I have had a few die but wasn’t sure if it was because I transferred them from an older plant to this one for more food.
    Thanks
    Allie

    #46793

    Jacqui
    Keymaster

    This sticky substance is called honeydew. If the sticky substance is accompanied by a black sooty coating on leaves, the honeydew is coupled with sooty mould.

    Learning what causes sticky honeydew sap and how to remove honeydew can get your plants back to normal and allow you to repair the damage. Ignoring the issues of honeydew secretion and its partner, sooty mould, can result in leaf drop and insect spread.

    Honeydew secretion begins when plants are attacked by forms of aphids, mealybugs, soft scale and other insects that feed on the plant. The sticky secretion comes from the insect and attracts other insects like ants.

    Honeydew sap comes from sugars and other substances in the plant. While the actual honeydew secretion does not do damage, the insects that cause it and those it attracts can seriously weaken the plant.

    Getting rid of the insects creating the honeydew is the first step. Don’t rush for a chemical spray, as these kill natural predators of the damaging insect. Wasps such as Aphidius colemanii and ladybirds quickly destroy damaging aphids. In some cases, a strong blast of water can be all that’s needed to knock the damaging pests off the affected plant and get rid of the sticky substance.

    I suggest you fill a spray bottle with ordinary water, put the pot in a plastic bag (so that the aphids and honeydew won’t fall into the soil) and if you’re doing it indoors put it on a washable surface or a plastic tablecloth for example. Then spray and rub the leaves vigorously, removing any leaves that look like they’re dying anyway.

    Passonvine leafhoppers are another pest that spread this problem. Check out the PESTS tab under SPECIES above.

    Do it as soon as possible as it spreads very quickly.

    Hope that helps!

    Neem oil, white oil, and insecticidal soap are useful when considering how to remove honeydew causing insects and what they’ve left behind. These natural products kill soft-bodied aphids and other pests that produce the substance without hutring their hard bodied predators.

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