The most common and perhaps most difficult to control insect pests in greenhouses and interior landscapes are whiteflies. Three common species of whiteflies, the greenhouse, sweet potato and banded wing, are potential pests on a wide variety of crops.
Whitefly control is difficult and complex, as whiteflies rapidly develop resistance to chemical pesticides. The USDA recommends "an integrated program that focuses on prevention and relies on cultural and biological control methods when possible.".
Whitefly Control. To prevent Whitefly infestation: Whitefly infestations can expand very rapidly, so preventative treatments are a great way to go. You can do preventative treatments in winter or cold months of the year with a garden oil to smother and eliminate overwintering whiteflies and their eggs.
Whiteflies are also a bit sneaky. Adult whiteflies lay eggs on the underside of leaves. It could be argued that whiteflies “hide” their eggs there, and in many instances, the eggs do escape detection. The adult whitefly female can lay hundreds of eggs on the underside of leaves, usually in a circular pattern. For whitefly control, place many sticky tape or other traps around the planting. Biological Controls. The small parasitic wasp, Encarsia Formosa, has long been used as a biological control for greenhouse whitefly. It develops within the whitefly nymphs. Young whiteflies turn black and die in several days.
Whiteflies damage plants by sucking the juices and secreting sticky residue that grows mold. The scale stage is hard to kill, but adults are more easily controlled. Traps can prevent the adults from laying eggs. Homemade sprays may be used to control whiteflies in greenhouses and on indoor potted plants.
Similarly, weeds may allow whiteflies to bridge crop-free periods, and should be eliminated. Culture of plants over white reflective mulch also decreases whitefly densities (Kelly et al., ). Yellow sticky traps can be hung in greenhouses to capture adult whiteflies, thereby reducing whitefly density. Biological Control. Aug 29, · Versys Insecticide is an effective and targeted new option for the control of key aphid species and suppression of silverleaf whiteflies. Versys .