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The small whitish oleander scale can infest a variety glasshouse plants, including oleander, dracaena, palms and ornamental asparagus.
Oleander scale is a sap sucking true bug that appears as a flat, oval, whitish-brown insects on leaves and stems of glasshouse plants. The whitish covering of the insect is waxy and repels liquids. The adults reach up to 2mm long, the immature stages (crawlers) are much smaller.
It does not produce honeydew and breeds throughout the year.
Infestations of oleander scale are characterised by the encrustations of the 2mm diameter scales on leaves and stems of glasshouse plants. Common host plants include Acacia, Asparagus plumosus, azalea (Rhododendron), Cyclamen, Dracaena, Nerium oleander (oleander) and palms. Heavily infested plants can lack vigour. It can appear similar to other diaspid scale insects
Oleander scale is difficult to control. Although scraping the insects off the leaves can help reduce infestations this is unlikely to give good control. It can be worth considering replacing heavily infested plants.
Oleander scale can be difficult to control with sprays as the waxy covering gives them some protection and the best results are achieved by spraying against the newly hatched crawlers. Heavily infested plants may need several applications.
Pesticides for gardeners (Adobe Acrobat pdf document outlining pesticides available to gardeners)
Beech scale Brown scale Cushion scale Diaspid scale Euonymus scale Fluted scale Hemispherical scaleHorse chestnut scale Hydrangea scale Juniper scale Mealybug Mussel scale Oleander RHS statement on pesticides in horticulture Scale insects Scurfy rose scale Soft scale Viburnum scale Wisteria scaleYew scale
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