Indoor gardens are exposed to fewer pests but infestations can still occur. When it comes to indoor hydroponic garden pests there are some common culprits.
Here are the 5 most common indoor hydroponic garden pests.
When it comes to annoyances there isn’t one much greater than a gnat. Fungus gnats wreak havoc on a hydroponic garden, quickly taking it over. It’s not the annoying adult gnats that are doing the damage though.
Fungus gnats lay a couple of hundred eggs at a time. Hatched larvae then eat away at your hydroponic garden’s root system before then transform into flies. Now having wings they can quickly spread to other plants in your garden.
Fungus gnats are attracted to dead matter so it’s important to keep a tidy hydroponic garden.
Aphids are tiny little hydroponic garden pests measuring at only about 1/8 of an inch. There are thousands of different kinds of aphids so they can be a variety of colors including green, white, yellow, red, brown, or black. They can look like tiny specs and often hang out in clusters.
Aphids are sap suckers, causing your plants leaves to discolor, wilt and curl. New plant shoots may look deformed or stunted. Like other sapsuckers, their waste attracts other pests like ants. Ants have actually been known to “protect” aphid colonies to protect their supply of sugary aphid waste.
Aphids are not cool but this video of a ladybug feasting on them is! What a great form of natural pest control!
Spiders are typically not harmful to a garden, but spider mites aren’t spiders. You often realize you have a spider mite problem when you see their telltale web. That web isn’t for catching prey, instead, it’s to protect the mite and it’s eggs.
Female spider mites can lay a few hundred eggs that can hatch in three days. Those freshly hatched mites will be ready to lay their own eggs in about a week, so you can see how they can quickly multiply into a big issue.
Mites feed on the plants leaves, causing them to yellow and eventually die. Their sticky web can also be damaging to the plant. If the infestations are isolated to just a plant or two, it’s easier to remove the plants so they don’t spread as opposed to rid the mites with a store-bought product.
Whiteflies look like tiny little moths but instead of being attracted to light they are looking to feed on your hydroponic garden. They are known to be especially fond of tomatoes and pepper plants.
Whiteflies can be easily spotted in their adult stage but are harder to recognize in their early stages. You can often find them hanging out in clusters on the underside of the plant’s leaves.
Not only does the whitefly suck the sap from your plants, leaving them wilted and open to disease, it’s droppings attract more disease and pests like ants. Whiteflies are also known to carry viruses from plant to plant.
Thrips can be a difficult hydroponic garden pest to spot for a few reasons. They hang out on the underside of plant leaves and are green so they blend in well. Thrips are also pretty fast and will jump or fly away quickly when they sense your presence.
Female thrips lay their eggs inside the cracks of the plant tissue, making them hard to remove from your garden. Like the other pests, they quickly multiply magnifying their small single amount of damage.
Plants affected by thrips often show white or yellow spots and may appear to have a silvery sheen.
I haven’t yet written an in-depth article on identify and ridding thrips from your hydroponic garden, but looking get one out soon.
No matter the precautions you take you’re bound to experience hydroponic garden pests at one time or another. By taking those precautions and keeping and checking your plants often for signs of pests, you can catch infestations early making them easier to resolve.