Thanks for this info! My Dad said he sprayed our container plants (not roses) because they had spider mite webs on them. I didn't know they made webs, and I was upset because I thought he had poisoned the beneficial spiders!
So how do you tell the difference between spider mite webs and webs from the good spiders--just look for a spider? (I know, sounds like a stupid question, lol)
Not a stupid question at all, in fact I was wondering myself. We have webs all over the place too. And, I like our beneficial spiders and spider webs. In fact, hummingbirds make their nests using spider webbing and lichen, etc.
Spider mites tend to multiply so rapidly that they usually become obvious, at least they did for us. It was hard to miss their infestation. Actually, our problem may have originated from an infested house plant that I moved out to our porch in the spring. I've found some plants are more prone to mite attacks than others. Had I sprayed our suspect houseplant(s), like your Dad did, perhaps we could have avoided this dilemma...who knows.
Aren't these things awful looking? Not sure if this is what I had, but while watering part of my garden, I discovered my Viburnum bush practically dead. Can't believe I didn't notice earlier, but I did a similar course of action, cutting down as far as I could. Upon further inspection, noticed that my burning bush was full of webs and tiny white cocoons. I didn't what to totally cut her down, but I did several forceful spray down with water, and it seemed to do the trick (??).
Now, the viburnum has totally dome back to it's former life (with bringing me 1 or 2 blooms a year. Oh well.) The burning bush still concern me, but I will keep an eye on it and continue spraying. Now I do wonder if this was the same bug, but also suspect moths, as we've had a crazy influx of these winged creatures in our area.
well, a good lesson to eye our gardens more carefully!!!!!
I agree it's easy to distinguish between spider mites and spiders. You can actually see the mites wreaking their havoc in their netted "cocoons." You could not mistake these for spider webs, at least of any kind I've run across. They remind me more of gypsy moth and their webs, which robbed up of so many of our native dogwoods in NY and NJ.
My worst experience with spider mites was also on indoor plants. The heat and dryness of homes in the Northeast during the winter seemed to be a great breeding ground for spider mites. And of course if affected plants were moved outdoors later, they mites were liberated to do more damage.
Said to say, I've never found a cure for an infected plant, but I will try this protocol in the future.
Just had to say "hi" because, when searching for more ideas about spider mites, I saw the photo of your GSD on your reply above! I have two, my constant companions in the garden and house.
I have read, here and there, various recipes for organic, indoor spider mite control. (My issue is on a jasmine that moves indoors and out, seasonally.) Isopropyl alcohol is said to be effective, in combination with water and soap. Recommended proportions seem to vary greatly, however!
But what moves me most to write, is that the University of Minnesota Extension does not list spider mites as one of the pests that is controlled by neem oil, wonderful and versatile as that substance is. Here's the article. http://www.extension.umn.edu/distribution/horticulture/m1183...
Scroll down a little way for lists of pesticides and what they are effective against; and even further for specific pests (great photos!) and methods of control.
I've always preferred washing affected house plants in the sink or shower, depending on their size. But my jasmine is almost 7 feet tall, and I want to avoid dragging it up to the shower for what is so far a very minor infestation. I tried an alcohol/water/soap mix; we'll see how it goes.
Best wishes with the roses in the coming season. I bet they'll be fine. I brought one back from the dead one year. I hadn't been paying attention, and one July evening I noticed that *all* the leaves had basically fallen off! Spider mites and drought. I cut it down to a foot high and moved it to a sunny, moist place, and it has thrived ever since. Full recovery and then some, within a year. Shrub roses are great.