S C A L E

What is scale? What does it look like?

Is scale the same as mealybugs?

You will usually find houseplant scale hanging out on the stems and leaf joints of a plant, as well as along the veins of leaves.

Scale insects look more like growth or small brown dots on a plant. They are rounded, oval shaped or flat - the colour can also vary from brown, tan to white. If the bugs on your plant are white and fuzzy, then those are mealybugs. Scale bugs tend to cluster more on a plant, once the population gets large - you will definitely notice it. 

 

How to get rid of scale insects on plants 

When you find scale insects on plants, you will want to isolate the infested plant(s) and begin treatment immediately!

Using chemical scale pesticides may not be the best option, as a lot of the time scale are resistant to most of the pesticides. They also have the ability to develop a resistance to chemical pesticides they are exposed to on a regular basis. 

 

Using alcohol to remove scale

Take a cotton swab, dip it in rubbing alcohol and wipe down the infected area. In order for this method to be effective, it must come in direct contact with the scale insects. 

Make sure to check every crevice of the plant, around the leaf and stem joints as well as underneath all of the leaves.

Neem oil 

Mix neem-oil with water (follow instructions on the bottle) in a spray can and spray the plant, making sure to cover the top and bottom of the leaves as well as the stems. Use a damp cloth to wipe away the bugs. This process can be repeated once a week until no sign is left of the insects.