More, than 4,000 types of aphid species exist


HONEYDEW: sticky substance secreted by aphids that damages plants and attracts ants


Also known as “plant lice”

Aphids, also known as "plant lice," are small, soft-bodied, pear-shaped insects with long antennae in the front and two short "tailpipes" in the rear. One of the first insects to arrive in spring, aphids come in a variety of colors - yellow, green, black, red and gray. Adults may or may not have wings.

More than 4,000 species of aphids exist. Of those species, an estimated 10 percent feed on a wide range of plants, draining sap with their piercing mouths. These harmful insects - which shed their skin, leaving little white flecks behind - cluster on the growing tips of plants or the underside of leaves. They distort flowers and foliage and stunt new plant growth. They also excrete honeydew; a sugary substance that forms a sticky coating on leaves and attracts ants. The honeydew provides a substrate for dark-sooty mold, giving plants a dirty appearance.

Certain species of aphids, such as conifer aphids and smoky-wing poplar aphids, prove more damaging than others because they feed directly on stems, twigs and branches - rather than on the underside of leaves. Some aphids inject toxins and transmit viral diseases from plant to plant through their saliva.

Aphids infest a variety of crops, including bedding and garden plants, potted plants, cut flowers and cut greens.

Enstar® AQ product can be used alone to control aphids. To prevent populations from reaching damaging levels, one 16-ounce bottle of Enstar® AQ product per 100 gallons of water should be applied every two weeks. To control existing populations, two 16-ounce bottles of Enstar® AQ product per 100 gallons of water (per 20,000 square feet) should be applied every seven days.

For broad-spectrum control with Mavrik Aquaflow® insecticide, use eight ounces per 100 gallons of water to treat 20,000 square feet every seven days until the aphids are controlled.

Enstar® AQ product and Mavrik Aquaflow® insecticide can also be used together to provide complete control.