Spider plants, also known as Chlorophytum comosum, originally evolved in Africa but now grow in different parts of the world.
This plant has become popular as an indoor plant as it is easy to care for and has a distinct, quirky appearance.
Most people wonder why the plant is called “Spider plant,” and it is a common misconception that they attract spiders!
Do Spider Plants Attract Spiders?
No, Spider plants do not attract spiders or any other pests.
They are called Spider plants because the leaves and plantlets at the end of the stems have a “spidery” look to them.
These plants might also be referred to as “airplane plants” for this reason.
If you are a Spider plant owner, do not worry about your plant attracting spiders!
It is not a natural occurrence, and if you do find spiders in your home or near the plant, there are several ways to get rid of them.
Indoor plants are, however, known to attract bugs because of high humidity or lack of proper ventilation.
Spider mites, aphids, mealybugs, scales, thrips, whiteflies, and gnats are the most common bugs that infest indoor plants.
Place your plant somewhere that gets plenty of sunlight, and if your home is humid throughout the year, invest in a dehumidifier to keep the bugs away.
How To Avoid Spider Mites On Your Spider Plants
It is nearly impossible to spot a spider mite with the naked eye.
To notice a mite clearly, you will need a magnifying glass or any other magnifier.
These bugs are tiny, red, and beige-colored.
While you cannot notice the mites themselves, their damage is quite apparent.
They suck the sap from the leaves to the point that the leaves are discolored or torn.
When you see the first signs of discoloration or yellowing, take action to get rid of the spider mites.
Here are a few things you can do to prevent spider mites from infesting your spider plant:
- Keep the room/space sterilized. Clean the room and the area in which the plant is kept. Use a plant-friendly cleaner so that it does not harm the plant.
- Be cautious while propagating the Spider plant. Do not use cuttings from anyone else, if you can help it, as they might contain mites. If you do use someone else’s cuttings, clean them throughout before planting.
- Examine yourself thoroughly. Spider mites can latch on to hair, clothing, or even get into cars, especially if you regularly visit gardens or parks with lots of plants. Shower or wear a different set of clothes before entering the room the spider plant is in.
- Conduct regular inspections. This is vital if you have more than one plant! Checking below plant leaves is helpful, as this is where most mites or pests reside.
So, these are the few things you can do to avoid the mites on your Spider plant.
But what if they still manage to reach the plant?
In that case, I have shared a few more tips that should help fix the problem.
Let’s check them out below.
5 Ways To Fix The Mites Issue On Spider Plants
Once you see damage on the Spider plant, ensure that there are actually spider mites on the plant.
Often, spider mites disappear after wreaking havoc on the plant.
Shake the leaves of the plant a few times, with white paper underneath to see if there are any remaining bugs.
There are a few ways you can help the Spider plant recover from mite infestation.
1. Isolation And Pruning
Separate the plant from other plants in the house.
This is the first thing you should do because spider mites can spread easily from one plant to another.
If one section of the plant is more affected than another, you should prune those parts.
After you do this, sterilize the surrounding area and your hands thoroughly.
2. Plant-based Miticides
Spraying miticides with natural ingredients is an effective way to get rid of mites on the spider plant.
Plant-based miticides are available commercially and easily accessible.
If you are unsure about whether the pesticide will harm the plant or not, do a patch test on one leaf first before spraying the entire plant.
3. Predatory Mites
A method most plant parents would not consider is intentionally infecting your plant with predator mites.
This sounds strange, but it is an effective method to eliminate spider mites without using sprays.
Phytoseiulus persimilis are predatory mites that you can purchase and let loose on your plant.
Apart from this kind of mite, ladybugs and lacewing can get rid of spider mites, too.
If you choose to go this route, avoid using pesticides or miticides of any kind, as they can kill the ‘friendly’ bugs as well.
The only natural pesticide you can use is rosemary oil if you do not want to kill the predatory mites.
Spraying the entire plant with lukewarm water from a hose is a good way to get rid of spider mites.
The underside of the leaves is usually where spider mites reside, so focus on the bottom of the leaves when hosing the plant.
5. Disposing Of The Plant
When the spider mite infestation gets out of hand, there is little you can do to save your plant.
If you have other plants at home, it is best to get rid of the infected plant.
Getting rid of your plants is difficult, but it is better to remove the plant from your home before the infestation spreads.
4 Natural Repellents For Bugs Issues On Spider Plants
It is understandable if you are hesitant to use chemical-based miticides on your plant.
Luckily, natural repellants work just as well in getting rid of spider mites!
Here are some substances you can use to disinfect your plant:
1. Neem Oil
Neem oil, obtained from the nuts of the Neem tree, is an effective and sustainable solution to fight mites.
The oil fights not only spider mites but also any other insect or pest that might harm your plant.
It can be re-applied regularly for it to kill the mites completely.
2. Rosemary Oil
This oil needs to be diluted with water first before it can be used on plants.
Rosemary oil is not toxic to humans, so it is especially effective for plants that you would want to harvest and eat.
3. Garlic Spray
The strong smell of garlic makes it a natural insecticide.
If you would like to try out a new homemade insecticide, use two whole bulbs of garlic and grind it well with a bit of water.
Mix this puree with a little bit of vegetable oil and mild soap solution.
Use a cup of this mixture with water and spray it on your plant as you deem fit.
4. Tomato Leaf Spray
This is a lesser-used mixture but is completely safe to use on plants and effective too!
Tomato leaves contain a substance called ‘tomatine’ that has alkaloids in it.
This substance is what keeps the insects and bugs at bay.
To make a spray, use two cups of tomato leaves and ¼ cup of water.
Leave the mixture overnight and strain it well the next day to spray on infested plant.
So, these are some of the effective natural ways through which you can control the mites infestation on your Spider plants.
Moving on, let’s have a look at the FAQs now.
No, Spider plants are not named after spiders for their ability to repel the insect. Spider plants are called so because of the way the leaves and plantlets look “spidery” at the bottom.
Lavender, Eucalyptus, Lemon Grass, Mint, and Lemon Balm are some of the plants that you should have in your garden if you want to drive spiders away.
Indoor plants attract all sorts of bugs and insects because of high humidity levels and lack of good air circulation.
No, but Spider plants are just as likely to be infested with bugs as much as other indoor plants are.
Spider plants enjoy moderate and indirect sunlight.
Over To You
Even though there is a similarity in names, the Spider plant has nothing to do with the spiders.
So, go ahead and get this plant for your indoor garden!
In case you have any more questions or doubts, do leave a comment below.
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