Root Aphids and Mealybugs

Root aphids and mealybugs damage to roots of plants by sucking the sap in the roots often causing wilting and discoloration of the plants.

Identify the problem Identify the problem

Root mealybugs and aphids are underground dwelling sap sucking bugs that feed on the roots of plants. They are similar to their above ground cousins (see aphids and mealybugs).

Root aphids are similar to above ground aphids but feeding on the roots instead of leaves and stems. E.g. The lettuce root aphid is a soil dweller that attacks lettuce roots in spring and summer, causing lettuce plants to wilt and occasionally die.

Root mealybugs are common in containers and well draining soils. The mealybugs have a thin, uniform waxy coating and lack the terminal wax filaments typical of their foliar-feeding relatives. Large white fluffy patches may develop on the roots.


  • Drench the soil by applying Organic Insect Control Pyrethrum using a water can with rose. This is best applied late in the day and every 2-3 days.
  • Rotate crops and do not plant root vegetables in areas affected by root aphids the year previously.

Did You Know Did You Know

  • Root aphids are Dysaphis spp.
  • Root mealybugs are Rhizoecus spp.

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Organic Insect Control with Pyrethrum

Organic Insect Control with Pyrethrum

Fast acting pyrethrum insecticide that controls a wide range of insects.


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