dealing with whitefly

Savona Technical Details

* Fatty acid non toxic insecticide
* Safe alternative to chemical pesticides
* “Effective against mealybugs, whitefly and aphids”
* 1 bottle will cover 500 sq.m
* Simply dilute with water for application

One of the most common tomato pests is whitefly, recognised by their white wings and yellow body. They attach their eggs to the underside of the tomato leaves typically on the ones with the shortest stalks. The eggs look yellow when first deposited, but then turn a brownish colour as they mature. When hatched the whitefly feed on the foliage of the plant.

Initial signs are a dewey secretion and the presence of a mould growth. The plant is affected by irregular ripening of the fruit and the sooty mould referred to earlier that leaves the plant looking generally a little sick. You can expect the secretion to attract other pests as well, an unfortunate side affect, ants and wasps both get attracted by the secretion.

The normal productive cycle of whitefly is between 15 to 30 days so you need to check and retreat the plants over this period to make sure you have taken care of the problem fully. While they are active you will need to be spraying at least once a week.

A simple and effective way to kill whitefly is to make a mix of one part liquid soap (insecticidal if you can get it) and four parts water, then to use a plastic spray bottle to apply the soapy solution to the whole plant, paying particular attention to the underside of the leaves.

Other more drastic alternatives are to use either a deltamethrin dust or permethrin dust, but I would try the Savona or the soap solution first.