What are some common succulent pests and how do I get rid of them?

What are some common succulent pests and how do I get rid of them featured

Common Succulent Pests and How to Get Rid of Them

Succulents have gained popularity in recent years for their unique and attractive appearance, as well as their low-maintenance nature. However, like any plant, succulents are susceptible to pests that can damage their leaves and hinder their growth. In this article, we will explore some common succulent pests and provide tips on how to effectively get rid of them.


Mealybugs are one of the most common pests found on succulents. These small, white insects form cottony masses on the leaves and stems of the plants, sucking out the sap and weakening the plant in the process. To get rid of mealybugs, you can:

  • Remove the infected parts of the plant and dispose of them.
  • Use a cotton swab dipped in rubbing alcohol to manually remove the pests.
  • Apply a solution of water and dish soap to the affected areas, making sure to rinse the plant afterward to remove any residue.


Aphids are another common pest that can infest succulents. These small, pear-shaped insects usually cluster on the new growth of plants, feeding on the sap and leaving behind a sticky residue. To get rid of aphids, you can:

  • Spray the affected plants with a strong jet of water to physically remove the pests.
  • Introduce natural predators such as ladybugs or lacewings to your garden.
  • Apply insecticidal soap or neem oil to the affected areas, following the package instructions carefully.

Scale Insects

Scale insects are immobile pests that resemble small shells or bumps on the leaves and stems of succulents. These pests feed on the plant sap and can cause yellowing and stunted growth. To get rid of scale insects, you can:

  • Remove the pests manually with a cotton swab dipped in rubbing alcohol.
  • Scrub the affected areas with a soft toothbrush dipped in soapy water to dislodge the pests.
  • Apply an insecticide specifically labeled for scale insects, following the instructions carefully.

Spider Mites

Spider mites are tiny pests that are difficult to see with the naked eye. They typically infest the undersides of succulent leaves, where they suck out the plant juices and spin fine webs. To get rid of spider mites, you can:

  • Wipe the affected leaves with a damp cloth to remove the pests.
  • Spray the plants with a mixture of water and insecticidal soap or neem oil.
  • Introduce predatory mites or ladybugs to control the spider mite population.

Fungus Gnats

Fungus gnats are small flying insects that are often attracted to the moist soil of potted succulents. While the adults do not usually cause significant damage to the plants, the larvae can feed on the roots and slow down the growth of the succulents. To get rid of fungus gnats, you can:

  • Allow the soil to dry out between waterings to discourage the gnats from laying their eggs.
  • Place sticky traps near the plants to catch the adult gnats.
  • Apply a solution of water and hydrogen peroxide to the soil to kill the gnat larvae.

By being vigilant and taking prompt action, you can keep your succulents healthy and free from these common pests. Remember to regularly inspect your plants and employ the appropriate methods to get rid of any infestations. Happy gardening!

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