How to get rid of insects on rhododendrons. –ISBUZZLE

If you are in the predicament of wondering how to get rid of insects on rhododendrons, then you have come to the right place.

Insects and pests can definitely be a nuisance, especially if you’re just trying to cool down your rhododendron and grow it to the best of your abilities.

Unfortunately, the pests come in different shapes and sizes and some are barely visible, so it can be hard to tell if you have bugs or not.

Luckily, I’m here to tell you about the signs of bugs, what kind you’re dealing with, how to get rid of them, and what you can do to prevent them from coming back.

So here’s everything you need to know to get rid of bugs on rhododendrons today!


Signs of Insects on Rhododendrons

As mentioned above, some pests, in fact many of them, are barely visible because they are so small that signs or symptoms are often noticed before the insects.

These are some of those signs.

  • Your rhododendron is hanging
  • Your rhododendron leaves have holes
  • The leaves or the plant are stickier than usual.
  • The leaves have turned yellow.
  • The leaves have turned white or pale.
  • brown leaves or tips
  • leaves or black spots
  • understory growth
  • Your rhododendron leaves are starting to fall
  • Your rhododendron leaves are curling
  • Cobweb-like material (red spider)
  • Bumps on leaves or stems (usually scales)

Although many of these signs or symptoms could mean something other than insects or pests, here are some key indicators that your rhododendron is infested.

Anytime you notice any of these signs, it’s a good idea to take a closer look to make sure you can eliminate them before more damage occurs.

Types of insects on rhododendrons

Below are a few types of insects or pests that you may encounter now or will (hopefully not) appear in the future when growing rhododendrons.


Aphids are among the most significant pests affecting plants of all kinds, and unfortunately rhododendrons can be infested just as easily as any other plant.

These insects are quite small (2-4mm) but can form in large groups and cause serious damage to your Rhododendron if left untreated.

Aphids can vary in color from green, red, black, gray, or other colors and have pear-shaped bodies, sometimes with wings.

I hate when insects have wings.

These insects can be found on leaves, stems, or even in the soil if you have aphids on the roots.

In general, you really don’t want them there.

red spider

Spider mites are very small (1/50th of an inch) so are barely visible to the naked eye, but if you suspect you have insects or pests you can spot them if you look hard enough.

If you have mites on your rhododendron, you may see small white dots or yellow dots, and I mean very small dots.

They are often found on leaves, but the telltale sign of spider mites is silky tissue on the undersides of leaves or on stems.

Although these pests are very small, they form in large numbers and eat away at your rhododendron.

Like aphids, they feed on leaf sap, taking nutrients with them and leaving the rhododendron to air dry.

This is why you will often see the leaves weaken or dry out as nutrients are lost to pests.


Unfortunately, mealybug is another common plant pest and can certainly affect your rhododendrons.

Fortunately or unfortunately, depending on how you look at it, scales are a little larger than mites and aphids, usually measuring between 1/8 and 1/2 inch.

The scales are usually brown or black and are often mistaken for part of a plant stem or branch where they like to hang out.

You will know if you have scales if you notice unusual bumps on the stems or leaves, sometimes in large numbers.

Again, scale insects feed on the sap or cell walls of leaves and cause nutrient loss in rhododendrons, along with other resulting problems.

There are even hard-to-remove varieties of armored shells.

white flies

Whiteflies are another pest you may come across that looks like their name, they look like whiteflies.

They are medium-sized (1/16-1/10 inch) pests and are often found on the undersides of leaves.

Like the other pests mentioned above, even whiteflies can feed on the sap, leaving a sticky honeydew that eventually turns into sooty mold.

As the name suggests, whiteflies also have wings, as you surely know.

Did I mention I really don’t like insects with wings?

It’s a good thing though, because whiteflies are attracted to the color yellow, so you can set up yellow sticky traps and they’ll fly out there instead of licking your rhododendron.

carrot beetle

A common insect you may encounter when growing rhododendrons is the root weevil.

The carrot weevil looks a bit like a beetle and measures approximately (1/3 inch).

Some telltale signs of carrot weevils are large holes in leaves or stems, especially around the edges.

Fortunately, damage often only affects the appearance of your rhododendron and not the health of the plant itself.

The bad news is that getting rid of them requires using a pretty strong pesticide, which isn’t always the best option.

For root weevils in particular, it’s best to trap them with folded cardboard or whatever material you have available and place them near the base of your rhododendron.

Rhododendron lace bug

Rhododendron lace bugs are a major problem for the plant, feeding on them and eventually killing the bush if left untreated.

These lace bugs are typically (1/8 inch) tall, appear white or brown in color, and can often be found on the undersides of leaves.

They feed mainly from the underside, and in return you may see small yellow spots on the surface of the leaves, or the leaves may turn yellow overall.

Generally, you don’t really want them around your rhododendrons, any more than others.

rhododendron borer

Rhododendron borers are small, beetle-like pests that can and do feed on the undersides of leaves and can cause leaves to wilt or curl more than other pests.

When the borers mature, they become the rhododendron borer and will have a distinctive appearance of yellow stripes along their length and wings.

The best way to get rid of rhododendron borers is to use pyrethroid insecticides and follow the manufacturer’s instructions.

How to get rid of these errors

Besides the treatments mentioned for some of the insects mentioned specifically, there are several ways to get rid of insects on rhododendrons.

These range from tedious to fairly basic, but are very effective at getting rid of bugs on your Rhododendron.

cotton swab and isopropyl alcohol

One of the first ways to try to get rid of insects or pests is to use a cotton swab dipped in alcohol to clean the leaves or to remove the pests yourself.

It’s very effective, although it can take a little time or miss some pests if you don’t cover all the areas.

Definitely worth a try if you only have household items to use.

insecticidal soap

Insecticidal soap is a great way to get rid of pests on rhododendrons because you can simply spray the plant and it will kill most insects on contact.

You can even make your own from some household materials by doing the following.

  • 2 tablespoons pure liquid soap
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • Diluted in 1 gallon of distilled water
  • Add to a spray bottle and spray your Rhododendron

You’ll probably have to spray more than once to get the best results, but it’s worth it!

take oil

Neem oil is one of my favorite things to get rid of bugs because not only does it work great for getting rid of them, but it also acts as a repellent.

Additionally, you can use this material for mold problems as it is also an excellent fungicide.

The mechanism of action is similar to insecticidal soap and kills on contact, but more than one spray is also needed for best results.

Also keep in mind that it can tend to scorch the leaves if left in the sun before it dries, so only spray in shade until you can.

If you are looking for good quality neem oil, you can get it from this neem oil.

to avoid errors

One of the best ways to control insects or pests is to prevent them from appearing or at least less often than they can.

Here are some ways to prevent insects or pests on rhododendrons.

  • Keep your growing environment clean
  • Provide good air circulation
  • Don’t Overwater Your Rhododendron
  • Ensure good drainage
  • Isolate infested plants from your rhododendron
  • Regularly check your Rhododendron for problems

final thoughts

You now have a complete idea of ​​how to identify pests and, in general, how to get rid of insects on rhododendrons!

Now you can grow a happy, healthy plant for as long as possible.

As always, have fun gardening and enjoy the process!

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